75 Year Celebration of
Snowsport History
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History of Deer Valley, Utah

Park City was incorporated as a town in 1884. After the stock market crash of the 1930s resulted in falling mineral prices, enterprising Parkites began turning their attention from the treasure inside the local mountains to the treasure that fell on top of them – Utah’s notorious light, dry and fluffy powder snow.

Since Deer Valley Resort opened its doors in 1981, the Resort has concentrated on preserving as much of the area’s original flavor, history and generous natural gifts as possible. Park City miners hauled $400 million in silver out of Park City’s mountains beginning in the 1860s

In 1946, the town’s first ski area, Snow Park (the current site of Deer Valley Resort) opened, followed by Treasure Mountain Resort (now Park City Mountain Resort) and Park West (which became Wolf Mountain and is now The Canyons).

Fast-forward to 1968. A New York native and longtime resident of New Orleans, Edgar Stern, had graduated from Harvard and served in the Army in World War II. He had then gone on to buy the first television station in New Orleans and build two luxury hotels – the Royal Orleans in New Orleans, and the Stanford Court in San Francisco, California. Also the developer of Star Ranch in Aspen, Colorado, Stern wanted to make changes to the way ski resorts operated from his own experiences in skiing.

Stern visited Park City in 1968 and found a small, struggling ski resort with 14,000 acres, owned by a mining company. It was the Park City Ski Area. With the rare opportunity to create a resort on private land, and the impending construction of Interstate-80 making Park City the closest ski resort town to an international airport anywhere in the country, Stern’s company, Royal Street, purchased the property in 1972 and began developing condominiums. The Resort was sold and work was started on what is now Deer Valley Resort.

While developing Deer Valley, Stern fully utilized his hotel experiences to create the most luxurious and service-oriented ski resort in North America. He focused on getting a feel for the land and designing the resort in unison with the natural surroundings. He also designed the resort to function as a luxury hotel property with pleasant surroundings, full amenities and a first-rate food operation.

Stern’s philosophy was to create the most civilized ski resort in America for an international and family-oriented clientele. It seems to have worked. Twenty years later, Deer Valley owners Edgar Stern and Roger Penske (of car racing fame and founder and president of Penske Corporation) have seen a dream come to fruition, with Deer Valley Resort consistently rating as one of the top ten ski resorts world-wide. The Utah Senate has officially proclaimed Edgar Stern the father of the Utah ski industry.

Stein Eriksen serves as host of Deer Valley’s elegant Stein Eriksen Lodge and as director of skiing at Deer Valley. In his capacity at the Resort, Stein entertains guests with his signature skiing style, assists with special events and activities, and is always up for surprise photo opportunities with enamored Deer Valley guests.

When Deer Valley opened in 1981, it presented many of Snow Park’s old ski runs as part of the new resort’s trail system. The majority of the Resort’s ski runs are named after mining claims in Park City, including “Mayflower Bowl,” “Hidden Treasure,” “Perseverance Bowl,” “Evergreen,” and “Fortune Teller.” Some of the runs are intentionally misspelled on the Resort’s trail map because that is how the mining claims are spelled and how Park City’s first residents spelled them, such as “Know You Don’t” versus “No You Don’t.” Hopefully, millions of viewers worldwide will appreciate the historical context of the run name when “Know You Don’t” is the site of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games slalom events. If those old miners could see it now!

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GM, Stern, Eriksen

General Manager, Bob Wheaton, Founders, Edgar & Polly Stern and Director of Skiing, Stein Eriksen

Deer Valley
Deer Valley Beach

The Beach

Deer Valley Sterling Lift

Sterling Lift



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