New corporate sponsors give $35,000 to Sima

Less than two weeks after beginning the ski resort’s corporate fundraising campaign, the Great Northern Ski Society, which oversees Sima operations, have secured three new sponsors.

While construction of Mt. Sima’s new chairlift nears completion, fundraising to help pay for it is also well underway.

Less than two weeks after beginning the ski resort’s corporate fundraising campaign, the Great Northern Ski Society, which oversees Sima operations, have secured three new sponsors.

Nuway Crushing Ltd. and Yukon Yamaha are now Bronze-level sponsors by together contributing $25,000 towards the cost of the new $3 million lift. Late last week, Whitehorse Beverages became an official supplier level sponsor with an additional $10,000.

“We’re excited to see Mt. Sima becoming a year-round destination hosting a variety of events and activities,” said Yukon Yamaha president Jason Adams in a media release. “Children are our future and by having this facility at our disposal, we feel that it helps to promote healthy lifestyles.”

“We’re delighted to have Nuway Crushing Ltd. and Yukon Yamaha on board as Bronze level sponsors,” said society president Craig Hougen in the release issued before Whitehorse Beverages joined on. “Their contributions are a testament to their support of the developments happening here at Mt. Sima and their commitment to supporting the community at large. Our fundraising campaign is now well underway and we’re confident we’ll reach out fundraising targets.”

At the start of the month, Pelly Construction Ltd. and the ski society announced a two-year sponsorship deal worth $100,000.

The Platinum level sponsorship has given the chairlift, scheduled to open with the season early to mid December, the “Pelly Construction Chair” name until November 2013.

Pelly was the first company to jump on board Sima’s corporate fundraising campaign, through which the ski society plans to raise the remaining $1.3 million to cover the cost of the lift.

With the construction of Sima’s new chairlift ahead of schedule, Whitehorse city council recently agreed to extend the ski society’s credit limit to $900,000 by $600,000 on a $1.6-million grant issued by the city at the start of June.

The new lift will be a fixed-grip quad chairlift, manufactured and installed by Doppelmeyr Lifts Limited. The quad lift will be capable of transporting up to 1,800 passengers an hour, about twice as many as the old lift.

Sima’s previous lift, which was 36 years old and was bought secondhand in the early ‘90s, suffered an estimated 21 breakdowns last season, including one on opening day that led to the first evacuation of the lift in the resort’s 17-year history.

A dependable chairlift at Mt. Sima will be crucial when Whitehorse hosts the 2012 Arctic Winter Games in March.

With an injection of $1.5 million from the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (Cannor) last summer, Mt. Sima is also currently building an adventure park on its premises to open next spring. WildPlay Yukon, as it will be called, will transform Sima into a year-round operation and will require a chairlift for its zipline operations.

Contact Tom Patrick at tomp@yukon-news.com

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