JAY -- Jay Peak Resort was closed for Thanksgiving Day despite a Nor'easter that dumped over a half a foot of snow to northeastern Vermont. The resort opened today for the rest of the 2014-15 season.
Officials said the move was a deliberate one. They said they wanted to give their operations team one more day of rest before what most believe will be a ski and ride season that lasts into May.
"We were happy to open a week early when we spun the chairs for employees and season pass holders last Friday," said Jay Peak's Chief Marketing Officer Steve Wright.
"But we made the conscious choice to remain closed through the holiday even if a storm swung our way. We have long winters up here and this is the only holiday a lot of our team can spend with their family."
Wright acknowledged that not everyone got the day off.
Jay Peak hosted three separate Thanksgiving feasts at its Alice's Table, Foundry and Howie's restaurants.
Plus there was a small team of snowmakers on the hill filling in any gaps this storm might miss.
"It will be a busy up here, but we served up a Thanksgiving meal in the Conference Center to all of those Jay Peak employees who are working the holiday," Wright said.
Resort officials admit the decision not to spin the lifts is a bit unusual.
But by delaying re-opening by a day, a large portion of the resort's more than 1,500 employees had the opportunity to enjoy Thanksgiving with friends and family, and got something that can come infrequently during the winter season: a day off.
Jay Peak opens for the seven-day-a-week operations on Friday.
Northeast Kingdom Community Action's holiday food drive is Saturday.
Individuals who bring a bag with at least three items of non-perishable food in it to the Stateside ticket window will receive a complimentary pass to the Pump House Indoor Waterpark.
Resort and NEKCA personnel will be on hand to give out the complimentary Pump House passes, which are valid Sunday-Friday, non-holiday, all-season. One pass will be given out per donor.