to take a look at this year's Ottawa event, held Oct. 22/23, 2016 at
the “EY” Centre, located out on Uplands Drive, roughly the
North East corner of the Ottawa Airport.
We attended on Saturday morning and if the traffic lined up to
get into the parking was any indicator of the popularity of the event,
you knew it was going to be a good crowd.
If the crowd around the Tremblant booth was any indicator of
the popularity of the Ski Magazine #1 Ski Resort in Eastern
North America... Tremblant is going to be seeing a lot of Regional
Ski/Board Fans on the Slopes of Versant Sud, Nord, Soleil and Edge!
More on Tremblant below, but before that...
Kunstadt Sports, probably the biggest independent sporting goods
retailer in the Ottawa market had a huge display and sale going on
that basically occupied the whole right end of the display hall. They
had a complete range of winter gear from hundreds of pairs of Skis,
tons of Snowboards, Clothing in all sizes, as well as all the usual
types of Accessories you could imagine. The crowds were huge in
this area and with discounts commonly 50% of pre-existing prices,
many previously marked down, it was no wonder. These are the kinds
of sales that make it possible for many families to outfit rapidly growing
kids without needing a second mortgage on the house...
As you entered the display hall, the left side featured all the destination
displays and we were surprised to find as many of the British Columbia
areas represented. Some Up-State New York and Vermont areas too,
so no shortage of choices to browse, especially when you add in all the
local Ontario/Quebec Ski Hills on either side of the Ottawa River.
There’s no question that the EY Centre is a very spacious venue for
a show of this size. While the large attendance was evident, there
was room to move and the isles were quite wide. Except for the
above noted Kundstadt Sale Zone, the only real constriction was
the line-up to buy discounted Tremblant Lift Passes!
Tremblant seemed to appeal to a very keen audience with the Ottawa
Ski Show special $52.00 Lift Ticket offer that folks could purchase
for between 2 to 7 days. We also suspect there are still a significant number
takers for the Sublime Pass and the good old “T66” bundle. We think both
of these excellent programs have been responsible for making a “Season”
possible for so many locals. No matter what form of Tremblant Passes were
being purchased, there was a steady line-up to buy them that was being
served quickly, but we suspect that none of the Tremblant Customer Service
Crew got any lunch breaks!
One way to think about Tremblant’s discount Lift Pass offers is
“Bulk Purchasing” because once you buy your chosen Pass, you
OWN those days. At this stage, with almost 6 months to organize
your days on the Mountain, your cost-per-day dramatically drops
with any additional days you can arrange to escape to Tremblant for.
Thanks For Attending Manufactures!
The one Feature of the Ottawa Ski Show we want to draw specific
attention to is the very welcome presence of several Manufacturers.
Ontario Ski Shows of recent decades had morphed into giant “Yard Sales”
that carried every single piece of old, past season(s) inventory east of
Lake Superior(that is the 1000Km long Lake Superior of Northern
Ontario, between Duluth Wisc., USA, and Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.,
not Tremblant’s Versant Nord, Lac Superieur). We got used to nothing
“New”, and a lot of “Picked Over”, with very little or no current gear
or related information.
We find New Ski design technology one of the most interesting and inspiring
aspects of Ski Shows. We were sorry to see that fade away in years gone by,
and we’re overjoyed to see it return now, so here are some glimpses of what
you’ll find in the latest shapes to hit the slopes.
We hope that any Manufactures Rep’s that see this coverage are reminded
that participation in Ski Shows is a vitally important element in building
enthusiasm and appreciation for not only the clever work of their Brand’s
Engineers, but enthusiasm for the Sport in general.
Below are some examples of Manufacturers Displays.
(Please Note: Due to Crowd Environments, photography for
all manufactures was not possible for the time we had.
We support all the manufactures on the attached Exhibitor List
for their attendance and we recommend you search them on
Google for their Official Websites.)
Nordica, a very well respected brand that’s been around for decades,
featured both Skis and Boots.
Dynastar is another established brand that’s been around for many,
many years. Their “Omaglass” designs were very popular when first
out in the 1970’s and they continue to be recognized as responsive
high performance Skis.
Head Skis are historically responsible for the revolution in modern
Ski construction that incorporated Metal laminates. That development
took Ski manufacturing firmly into the 20th century and virtually
rendered all the old style Wooden Plank Skis obsolete. Today, Head
is currently one of the most aggressive Athlete Sponsors and anyone
watching Ski Racing at any level up to World Cup is seeing a lot of
head products on the Winners Podium.
While we are focused on Alpine, i.e., “Downhill” Skiing, Nordic,
Cross-country Skiers had their corner too and Trailhead was well
stocked, and well staffed for those who need “Skinny” Skis.
In Summary... The Ottawa Ski Show is a great way for Eastern Ontario
regional Ski/Board Fans to get in the mood for the upcoming winter
season. There is a good blend of Destination Options, Manufacturers
Displays and Discount Ski/Board Gear. Obvious by Licence Plates in
the parking lot and Bilingual conversation on the show-floor, this show
is very well attended by Quebec Ski/Board Fans too, so it’s appeal,
like the Sports themselves, is universal across the region. On that note,
we actually think there’s probably potential to grow this show if there
continues to be an absence of a Montreal based Snow Show.
(Please Note: This is Tremblant360, so coverage here is
“Tremblant-Centric” and while we will provide a list of the
display roster, attached below, we don’t cover other other
Ski Resorts specifically.)
Exhibitor List, Below, Display Hall Exhibitor Floor-plan, Below X 2:
Company Name Booth number(s)
Aspen Skiing Company 313
Big White Ski Resort 303
Biggs Design 212, 214
Bolton Valley 318
Bromont, montagne d’experiences 425
Bytown Ski Club 121
CADS – National Capital Division 116, 118
Calabogie Peaks Freestyle Club 109, 208, 111, 210
Calabogie Peaks Resort 403
Camp Fortune 404
Canadian Ski Instructors Alliance 420
Canadian Ski Patrol 120, 122
Costco Wholesale 119
Epoch Times Ottawa 110
Fischer Alpine 502
Fischer Nordic 504
Grendon Travel 418
Golden Arrow Lakeside Resort 220
Hill Glider 113
Jackson Hole Mountain Resort 315
Jay Peak Resort 325
Kunstadt Sports 501, 527
Lanctot Ltee 129
Loon Mountain Resort 312
Merit/ Ultimate Ski Vacations 400, 402
Mont Blanc 412
Mont Cascades 405
Mont Orford 522
Mont St. Sauveur 415
Mont Ste-Marie 409
Mont Sutton 423
Mont Tremblant 408, 410
Mount Pakenham 401
National Capital Ski Club 112
Ottawa Sport and Social Club 211, 213, 215
Otto’s Subaru BMW 101, 201
Owl’s Head 524
Panorama Mountain Resort 311
Polar Piece 123
RA Ski Club 124
Revekstoke Accommodation Associ 305
Rodan and Fields 106
Silver Star Mountain Resort 308
Ski Banff-Lake Louise-Sunshine 301
Ski Extreme Club 108
Ski Vermont 322
Ski Vorlage 411
SkiCan Limited 500
Smugglers’ Notch Resort 319, 321
Snow Cross Academy 114
Snowhawks Ski & Snowboard School 422
St. Lawrence Summits 419,421
Station Edelweiss 413
Stowe Mountain Resort 323
Sugarbush Resort 320
Sunday River Resort 324
Titus Mountain Family Ski Center 219, 221
Top of the World 229
Tourism Sun Peaks 309
Tourisme Laurentides 414
Tours Altitude 424
Trailhead Paddleshack 329
Waterville Valley Resort 314
Whiteface – Lake Placid 223, 225