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3 From Ski Area to Ski Resort: 1971-1980

Christie, John Down East Books ePub

The decade of the 1970s was to mark the emergence of Sugarloaf as a true “destination” resort in the finest sense of the word. To be a destination where skiers go to stay for an extended period of time, the resort must have all of the necessary amenities (lodging, food, entertainment, and shopping), and it must allow visitors to leave their automobiles behind. They need to be able to walk or be bused to wherever they want to go during their stay. It also requires that there be a sense of place—in Gertrude Stein’s words, “a there there”—populated by a community of people constituting a real town. The 1970s saw all of these needs met with an explosion of housing development on the Mountain and in the Valley, and the establishment of a real town with the incorporation of Carrabassett Valley in 1972.

The early years of the decade also served to remind everyone involved in the economics of the ski business, not only at Sugarloaf but elsewhere in the East, how fragile was the balance between success and failure, as both sparse snowfall and the first Arab oil embargo led to diminished traffic and a tenuous revenue stream.

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6 The Dream Abides: 2000-

Christie, John Down East Books ePub

First, a word or two about my chosen title for this final chapter in the Sugarloaf Story. Fans of the Coen Brothers’ movies—and I count myself among the most rabid, even though I’m not much of a moviegoer (I just choose them well)—consider The Big Lebowski to be one of their best.

In this classic, the star-crossed hero, one Jeffrey Lebowski, is mistaken for another Lebowski from whom some scurrilous scoundrels are attempting to extract some serious money. The trials and tribulations that Jeffrey, who refers to himself as “The Dude,” endures are hilarious, and in most cases brought upon himself by a combination of his naiveté, his substance-induced foggy state of mind, and the stupidity of his friends. After all is said and done, he survives to flounder along for another day. When asked how things are going, he responds, “The Dude abides.”

Webster tells us one definition of the word abide is “to continue to endure,” and that’s how The Dude meant it. And that’s how I mean it in the title of this chapter. The dream does endure. And the dream is one that includes the hopes of Amos and the Bigelow Boys, of Bunny Bass and George Cary and King Cummings and Warren Cook, and now multiple generations of Sugarloafers from Maine and afar who share a deep devotion to this special place.

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Appendix B: Sugarloafers in the Maine Ski Hall of Fame

Christie, John Down East Books ePub

Karl Anderson

“Bunny” Bass

Dick Bell

Fletcher Brown

John Christie

Irv Kagan

Jean Luce

Jack Lufkin

Wes Marco

“Pat” Murphy

Roger Page

Tom Reynolds

“Stub” Taylor

Peter Webber

Amos G. Winter Jr.

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Appendix C: Golf Club Rating and Awards

Christie, John Down East Books ePub
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Appendix A: The People Who Got It Going

Christie, John Down East Books ePub

Note: This material was compiled by Dick Crommett shortly before his death, as part of his project to write a history of the town of Carrabassett Valley.


Chester Atwood Jr.

Emerson Barrow

Vernon Dexter

Howard Dunham

Wendell Dunham

Roscoe “Mickey” Durrell

Roland Fotter

Kendric Lane

Taito Maki

Donald “Kid” Murray

Hayden Nichols

Russell Riggs

Russell Seavey

Robert “Stub” Taylor

Odlin Thompson

Austin Thompson Jr.

Glen Turner

Harry Vose

Edgar Vose Jr.

Amos Winter



Robert N. “Bunny” Bass, President

C. Richard Luce, Vice President

Richard H. Bell, Secretary and Clerk

James P Flint, Treasurer


Fletcher H. Brown

Benjamin Butler

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