Old Town, New Tricks

As Park City, Utah redefines itself in a new age, we get a local perspective on how the town has changed for the better.
Park City Chamber Naive Tout Photo

As I walk along Park City’s Historic Main Street with its high-end boutiques, award-winning eateries and authentic western saloons (in the shadow of two world-class ski resorts, I might add) it’s hard to imagine this bustling ski town as the struggling silver mining community it was just five decades ago. But a small town it was, and that charm has stayed; albeit with a few more things going on than the miners were used to.

As a local, I love the history of my town. But I’m also excited about our future—and this year Park City has really outdone itself. We’re home to new restaurants, attractions, and most notably, the new Park City Mountain, now the largest ski resort in the United States.

But with more than $50 million in renovations connecting Park City Mountain Resort with the former Canyons Resort, Park City Mountain isn’t just a big deal; it’s also just plain big. It offers 7,300 acres, 41 lifts, and 300+ trails for skiers and snowboarders to explore to their hearts’ content. With all that plus their new high-speed Quicksilver gondola connecting the two resorts, a new restaurant and new snowmaking capabilities, Christmas is coming early on November 21, when Park City Mountain opens.

While Park City Mountain may have the, ahem, biggest changes in town, the other local resort has also cooked up a few exciting improvements that has me counting down the days  until winter. Deer Valley ranked #1 in the categories of Dining and On-Mountain Food by the readers of SKI Magazine for 2016. As lucky locals, we enjoy their food year-round, but this winter they’ll be opening a new restaurant: Bald Mountain Pho in Silver Lake Lodge. Plus, this year, they’ll be treating their famously groomed runs to other renovations and new snowmaking technology to make this season one we won’t want to end. Deer Valley opens December 5.

Winter in Park City is truly a magical time. Home to the 2002 Olympic Winter Games, we are proud of our Olympic legacy and excited to see it continue. In February, we’ll be hosting the 2016 Visa U.S. Freeskiing Grand Prix and the FIS Freestyle World Cup. We love cheering on the athletes at competitions at Utah Olympic Park and you can play athlete yourself with a 70-mph ride on the Comet bobsled. You’ll have the time of your life (and you can thank me later).

If you really want a local’s secret to experiencing Park City, we’d tell you that while the skiing and snowboarding is great, the town is what sets us apart. From live music and a vibrant bar scene, to luxurious spas and over 150 restaurants and cafes, there’s just as much fun to be had off the mountain. See, I told you we weren’t a one-horse silver mining town anymore.

I’d never change the charm and history that makes Park City what it is, but I must admit, I’m excited for what the future will bring.