January 21, 2009

X Games opening in Aspen

The X Games open this week in Aspen, Colo., and organizers say the economic slump means costs have been trimmed.

I can assure you, we are taking our lumps as much as any event out there, said general manager Chris Stiepock told The Denver Post. "We will assuredly not bring in as much revenue, and in turn we have to cut


Attendance dipped by 4,000 last year from 2007 to 72,500. But that was still twice the number of people who came in 2002, when the games were first held in Aspen.

Aspen and other Colorado ski resorts have been feeling the bad economy, in spite of heavy snowfalls creating great skiing. About one-quarter of the hotel rooms in town remained empty during the New Year's holiday.

The overriding theme across all of town right now is, 'Thanks for X,' said Bill Tomcich, president of Stay Aspen Snowmass, the resort's central reservation agency. X represents the highest peak of our booking for the entire balance of the ski season.

The games open Thursday.