Frisco, Copper join forces to keep visitor info flowing |

Frisco, Copper join forces to keep visitor info flowing

Summit Daily/Reid WilliamsCopper Mountain Ski Resort matched the town of Frisco's $25,000 budget to establish Old Town Hall as a visitor information center.

FRISCO – Copper and Frisco have joined hands to welcome Summit County visitors, just in time for ski season.Copper Mountain, the Copper Mountain Resort Chamber, the town of Frisco and the Frisco Chamber are partnering to create a joint Copper-Frisco Visitor Information Center in Old Town Hall on the corner of Main Street and Third Avenue.”Frisco doesn’t have a golf course or a rec center to hang our hat on,” said Frisco Chamber president Scott Brunvand. “Our closest ski area is Copper. If we align ourselves with them, there are some synergies that really work for both of us.”The town and Copper Mountain will each pony up $25,000 for the center’s 2005 operation costs. The town will also make about $30,000-worth of in-kind contributions, including the use of town-owned Old Town Hall, utility costs and cleaning. In return for Copper’s funding, the resort will receive prime signage locations on the interior and exterior of the building and top billing by the staff inside the center.

The Frisco Chamber will assume the day-to-day responsibilities of running the operation.The collaborative effort is a phoenix of sorts, rising from the ashes of the closed Summit County Visitor Information Center on Summit Boulevard, which shut its doors in June because of dwindling funds.The old center was run by the Summit County Visitor Information Center board, closely connected to the Summit County Chamber.Town officials, worried about the potential hit to tourism, worked with both chambers to keep brochure racks and volunteers in Old Town Hall.”We open the door in the morning and lock it at night, but we don’t have anyone to meet and greet the people,” Brunvand said.

The new arrangement, yet to be finalized, will ensure that visitors receive a hearty welcome five hours a day, seven days a week.The Frisco Chamber is seeking a full-time visitor center manager to reopen the operation in its newest incarnation Dec. 1. Chamber leadership hopes that the sale of brochure rack space will offset the need for future funding from Copper and Frisco. Rack space will sell at a discounted rate for Frisco Chamber and Copper Chamber members.”I don’t think we’ll ever get it to be a profit center, but we can do a lot of things to sustain it so we don’t have to keep going back to the town,” Brunvand said. “As a chamber, we’re excited to do it. It’s going to start to take our whole emphasis from events to getting more focused on what a chamber would normally do.”Frisco town manager Michael Penny hopes the relationship between the town and Copper Mountain will continue to grow in the marketing and events arena.

Julie Sutor can be reached at (970) 668-3998, ext. 203, or

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