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SNOWBOARDING GAINING ACCEPTANCE, BUT NOT EVERYWHERE
Published December 15, 1995
Snowboarding is gaining in popularity and acceptance, but even as the sport gains Olympic medal status in '98, many resorts continue to ban it. The N.Y. TIMES reports that even though the number of major board manufacturers has increased to nearly 20 and snowboarding visits at ski areas rose 17% last season, resorts such as Park City and Keystone continue their bans, claiming boarders are too reckless. Eric Blehm, Managing Editor of Transworld Snowboarding: "Resorts like theirs will have to change because financially, they'll have to. Families who go on vacation want to go to mountains that allow both snowboarding and skiing." NSGA reports the number of U.S. snowboarders grew from 1.5 million in '90 to 2.1 million in '94, while the alpine skiers dropped from 11.4 million to 10.6 million during the same period (Barbara Lloyd, N.Y. TIMES, 12/14). ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF GROWTH: Marker International of Salt Lake City and DNR Sportsystem of Switzerland will begin construction on a new 45,000-square-foot snowboard manufacturing facility in UT. Production capabilities after the completion of the first phase of construction will be 200,000 snowboards annually (Marker International). MIZUNO TO DIVERSIFY INTO RESORT MANAGEMENT: Mizuno Corp. of Japan is planning to design and develop ski areas owned by local governments and corporations in Japan. The company will concentrate on marketing, advertising and retailing while designing ski areas. Mizuno will develop three areas within the next two years, including one in Nagano (KYODO NEWS SERVICE, 12/15).