All right gang--I think we may have explored about all we can regarding pricing. I'd love to bring the cost down further, but it's already at the bottom! Please remember that, unlike most products, there was no attempt made here to maximize "profits," or even to consider how much people would be willing or able to pay! We figured only how much it would COST us to do this camp, and how little we could afford to charge, while respecting the professionalism of the instructors--who will still be taking a cut in pay to do this. We did not just pull some price out of the air. If it is not affordable for someone who really wants to come, I am truly sorry. But there is a cost to this thing, as with anything of quality, and the option to just lower the price simply doesn't exist!
In that note, I would LOVE it if any Bear with the means and motivation wanted to offer some financial assistance to someone who cannot afford the camp. To me, that would be a fantastic expression of the community spirit that is developing here at EpicSki. People are contributing in many ways here--numerous people have already volunteered time and expertise to help pull this off, and that will continue. The instructors are eager to help out, even though their expenses may not even be met. If anyone has the desire, and the means, your financial support is certainly most welcome!
That includes instructors--if you want to donate money, please do--but folks, this should be their choice, just is it is for everyone else. Please don't ask us to extract a donation from their paychecks!
Yes, I suppose we could have done something cheaper if we wanted to. Like other ski schools, I'm sure I could have found some kids with no training and bought them lift tickets and beers, and they'd have gladly pretended to be "ski instructors."
But my focus is on creating the highest-quality experience I possibly can, with the best professionals available--NOT on cheapness! (Cheapness is available elsewhere!) Even so, the cost is as low as we could go in good conscience. Want to compare it? Check out a 5-day program with the NASTC (National Ski Training Center). This excellent program is analogous to ours, in that it employs top-level instructors who have to travel to the event. It costs $1597, for 5 days. Yes, it includes lift tickets, so let's take $250 dollars off that: $1347. And it includes 3 dinners and 4 breakfasts--if they're VERY good, they may be worth another $300. We're down to $1047 for the 5 days of instruction--roughly $210 per day, well over DOUBLE the cost of the EpicSki Academy. And it is probably worth every penny!
Anyway gang, I'd really like to get back to the planning of this event. Time is limited for all of us, and mine could be put to better use in other areas here! I appreciate the feedback, concerns, and ideas, but I hope everyone understands that "letting the instructors bleed" is neither an acceptable option, nor one that would be in ANYONE'S best interest! I hope this post helps explain why the cost simply cannot go any lower without sacrificing quality, and I hope we can now move on!
I look forward to seeing as many of the Bears as possible at the camp. Keep the ideas coming!
[ September 16, 2002, 10:24 PM: Message edited by: Bob Barnes/Colorado ]