Community Profile: Sunlight's Joe Sims wears many hats to help keep mountain operations in top shape

Community Profile: Sunlight’s Joe Sims wears many hats to help keep mountain operations in top shape

Daylight Mountain Resort Ski Faculty Principal and Resort Building Supervisor Joe Sims paints a counter inside the brand new ski rental yurt on the base of Daylight Mountain.
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When you’re not fortunate sufficient to have the Daylight Mountain Resort ski college supervisor himself as your ski teacher, chances are high Joe Sims will greet you within the car parking zone or level you in the proper route by prime of the steps. to begin your day on the slopes.

And in the event you see a brand new construction on the mountain or discover that one thing has been upgraded on the base lodge in the course of the low season, chances are high that is additionally hands-on Sims work.

As a veteran Daylight Mountain worker of 25 years, Sims is a kind of “man of many hats” who steps in at any time when wanted on any given day to assist preserve issues working easily.

“He is at all times able to step in and assist everybody, and he is aware of nearly every thing about ski resort operations,” Daylight basic supervisor Tom Hays stated. “He is an elevator mechanic when wanted, and a carpenter when wanted, and so forth.

“He is at all times able to step in and assist everybody, and he is aware of nearly every thing about ski resort operations,” Daylight basic supervisor Tom Hays stated. “He is an elevator mechanic when he must be, and a carpenter when he must be, you title it.”

“And he at all times retains an excellent constructive perspective about doing what’s finest for our clients.”

Sims bought his begin as a ski teacher in his hometown resort straight out of faculty, after graduating from what was then generally known as Mesa State Faculty (now Colorado Mesa College) in Grand Junction.

He rapidly rose to a supervisory place and inside 5 years was appointed director of the Daylight Ski and Snowboard Faculty.

“I really ski raced in highschool, so I already had a ardour for the game,” stated the Glenwood Springs Excessive Faculty alum. “I did not know this might be my profession path, however educating snowboarding is unquestionably a ardour I’ve. And it is enjoyable.

A builder by commerce alongside along with his father, Invoice Sims, and brother, Bob Sims, Joe Sims can also be the Head of Building at Daylight.

Native expertise

Sims, 49, grew up domestically, residing and attending college in Glenwood Springs but additionally spending a whole lot of time on the household ranch, the Diamond J, positioned within the Frying Pan Valley exterior of Basalt.

There, he and his brothers honed their constructing expertise alongside their father.

After highschool, he moved to Mesa State the place he earned a level in communications. He utilized this talent by doing internships at KSPN radio in Aspen and KREX TV in Grand Junction.

“I’ve at all times had a love for music, and so radio pushed me in that route,” Sims stated. “So I did a little bit of radio work, however after I began educating snowboarding I beloved it a lot and it simply took off from there.”

On the facet and in the course of the summers, he would construct homes along with his brother, who’s a basic contractor.

Finally, he constructed a house in Glenwood Springs for his family, together with his spouse Sara and two kids, son Jacob and daughter Grace, who each attend GSHS.

The home contains an adjunct unit the place his dad and mom, Invoice and Martha, reside. His older brother, Chuck, additionally lives with them. Sara works as executive director of Mountain Valley Developmental Services primarily based in Glenwood Springs.

Naturally, these constructing expertise got here in helpful at Daylight, the place Sims is in command of any development, restore, or renovation challenge that occurs from season to season.

Joe Sims, the director of the Daylight Mountain Resort ski college, comes out of the lodge on the base of Daylight Mountain.
Chelsea Unbiased/Publish Unbiased

Opening of the ski college yurt

The large challenge for the 2022-23 season was to construct a brand new terrace subsequent to the rental store on the mountain on the prime of the primary staircase, which now homes a yurt.

On Tuesday final week, Sims was placing the ending touches on the inside of the yurt, which can present a devoted space for ski and snowboard rent for these registered for classes.

The yurt itself was bought from Glenwood Caverns Journey Park, and preparations for the bridge required intensive digging down the slope to the car parking zone to accommodate.

“The rationale for that’s merely to have extra space for rental operations,” Sims stated. “It is our bottleneck when folks come right here, and it tends to get caught within the rental division.”

To maintain issues transferring, particularly for purchasers who’re ready for a category and have a time constraint, all of the paperwork and becoming for this group of purchasers will likely be achieved within the yurt.

“I am actually buttoning up little issues right here, so we will end earlier than stock is available in,” he stated.

“There’s nothing extra I am unable to stand watching folks wait, so it’s going to actually assist to hurry issues up and get folks out on the hill as rapidly as attainable.”

Coordinating with Hays and Mountain Supervisor Ross Terry, Sims helps oversee a staff of a few dozen development employees in the course of the summer season and a daily upkeep crew in the course of the ski season.

Different initiatives that will likely be notable for the season are the brand new digital path map panels on the backside and prime of the mountain, and a few upgrades to the bottom lodge cafeteria kitchen.

On Tracks

The Sims’ true ardour is educating folks to ski.

The Daylight Ski and Snowboard Faculty has round 60 instructors in whole, with round a dozen educating classes at any given time.

“Nearly all of what we train right here is learners,” Sims stated. “What’s thrilling for me is seeing somebody study one thing new in just some hours. This newbie’s lesson is essential, whether or not studying the way to get on the elevate or snowboarding down and turning a bit.

Classes final two hours every within the morning and afternoon, and sometimes those that take a morning lesson will swap to a day lesson, he stated.

Sims has a specific ardour for educating folks with disabilities, together with kids with autism or developmental or bodily disabilities.

“That is the place my coronary heart is admittedly in it, it is folks with disabilities,” he stated. “Our idea with ski classes is that in the event you can stroll, you may ski. However I’ve had individuals who cannot stroll and may ski.

With the assistance of tailored ski gear, corresponding to ski bikes or seated monoski sledges, or by means of using specifically skilled guides for the visually impaired, an increasing number of disabled folks discover their strategy to the slopes. .

“Bringing this group of individuals up the mountain and educating this specialised talent set is a whole lot of enjoyable,” Sims stated.

For the previous few years, Sims has contributed to the Kirstie Ennis Basis Girls’s Vet Snowboard Clinic, held at Daylight in January. This system is again for 2 dates this season.

Through the years, Sims has taught newbie skiers as younger as 2 or 3 years outdated, together with his personal kids, and as outdated as 90.

“I can share my ardour with them, they usually actually respect it,” he stated of his personal teenage kids who now additionally assist out at Daylight.

“We see lots of people coming in to strive which are of their 60s and 70s, which is enjoyable to see,” Sims stated. “It is my factor, when you’ve got the motivation and are able to strive it, let’s do it.”

Hays notes that Daylight’s ski and snowboard college and kids’s schooling heart have each grown about 50% because the pandemic beneath Sims’ management.

“It is a mixture of reasonably priced pricing and nice instructors,” Hays stated.

At $155 for a two-hour lesson plus a elevate ticket and rental bundle, Sims stated it is laborious to beat that in an trade that has turn out to be more and more costly.

It is a kind of issues that makes Daylight distinctive on this world.

“I’ve a particular place in my coronary heart for Daylight,” Sims stated. “It is necessary to me, and I wish to see him succeed. And to make it a enjoyable place the place folks come to find out about snowboarding and snowboarding.

Publish Unbiased appearing editor and senior reporter John Stroud will be reached at [email protected] or 970-384-9160.

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