NORWICH – At its weekly meeting held Tuesday, the Norwich Chapter Rotary Club hosted a presentation by representatives from to area recreation interests in an effort to generate some local interest to the Chenango County's nearest resort.
As partner-owners of Greek Peak Mountain Resort and Hope Lake Lodge, Marc Stemerman and John Meier went head-on into a joint venture acquisition, the result of an ill-fated departure from the mountain's previous ownership.
In 2013, the largely underutilized Greek Peak was placed atop the auction block shortly before Stemerman and Meier stepped in to mold a development opportunity that would save the mountain the two Elmira business owners had come to enjoy for more than thirty years apiece.
“We knew that there was so much untapped potential for Greek,” said Meier “and an expansion beyond skiing was a priority from day one,” he added.
Jill Darling, publicity Director for the Triple Cities Ski Club (TCSC) also presented at the Rotary meeting. Based out of Vestal, TCSC boasts an open relationship with Greek Peak and utilizes that as leverage to benefit club members in lieu of deep discounts on lift tickets, equipment rentals and admission into the resort's Cascades indoor water park.
“We currently have more than 400 members and are always reaching out for more,” said Darling. “People often ask 'why join a ski club?' — I answer 'because we do all the work, and you reap so many benefits,'” she added.
According to Darling, TCSC serves as the Norwich area's closest organized and chartered ski club. “We want to make TCSC visible to the people of Chenango County, and we'd love to grow our organization into the area,” said Darling.
“We want people in the Norwich area to know that we're here, and not that far away,” said Stemerman. “It's a very exciting time for Greek Peak, and we're trying to spread the word to all of the communities that surround us.”
With that being said, the expansion of Greek has already transformed what was known as “just another ski area” into “Four Seasons of Fun for Everyone” by the hands of Stemerman and Meier.
“We have plenty to offer our customers during the “off-season” from our Adventure Center, Mountain Coaster, Zip Lines and our Ropes Course team building,” said Meier
According to Meier and Stemerman, fabrication of mountain bike hooks that will be incorporated on the resort's chair lifts were recently complete and will be in use by summer or 2015.
Along with the additions to the facility, the company also recently applied for and received a economic development grant which will allow the Greek Peak to invest even more into the growing facility. Plans for a new stone and timber deck punctuated with propane fire pits overlooking Gridley Creek will be "the largest structure of it's kind in Cortland County,” Stemerman said.
Norwich Rotary President Elect David Harris said “One of the goals Norwich Rotary has is facilitating exposure of local businesses and organizations.”
“Often times we place an increased emphasis on what is available right here in greater Norwich and Chenango County, but in this case Rotary has looked beyond our immediate footprint to spread the word as a service to our community.” said Harris.