Before I arrived in Utah, I knew nothing about this place. My then-fiancé, Ron, convinced me that we should begin our lives together here, in Park City. So, I rolled into town in 1992 with a Snowed Inn wedding on the horizon, more debt than cash, a budding business idea (yep, this very magazine) and a lot of growing up to do—together with my adopted hometown.
When I arrived, the Main Street post office was the social gathering spot for locals—all 2,500 of us. Highway 224 was a two-lane dirt road, filled with pot holes and, instead of traffic lights, a herd of elk would cause a majestic roadblock each evening at dusk, like clockwork. Restaurants were open unpredictably, which confounded me as a New Yorker accustomed to 24-hour-a-day eatery access (hence Mountain Express’ dining-centric beginnings). In November, the entire town gathered for a traditional pray-for-snow party in Old Town. And it snowed almost every night—giving way to the sunniest, bluest skies I had ever seen. We worked as hard as we skied. Business was crammed into four months of the year. And then we breathed in the quiet as mud season gave way to the then-secret season, summer.
Twenty-five years later, I still marvel at how awe-inspiring this place was—and still is. As our town has evolved, so too has this magazine. But, at its core, the mission of this publication has stayed the same: we celebrate this magnificent place, its wildlife and its people, always shining the spotlight on what makes living and playing and visiting here so spectacular.
This issue continues in that spirit, as our writers serve up the best in outdoor adventure, luxury living, wellness, community and, of course, cuisine. Allow us to introduce you to the former mayor and a 40-year resident, the historic skier subway, a mining adventure company with deep, local roots and the man behind locally-made tiny houses. Check out our picks for snowshoeing and cross-country skiing and how to cope with the altitude. Step behind the scenes for the skinny on how Deer Valley preps for the ski season and get tips from experts on exercises — we’re talking squats and stretches—to prepare for the slopes. Meet an Olympian, flip for the Freestyle World Cup, take a retrospective glance at Sundance Resort and discover why our eco-conscious city council has adopted a plastic bag ban.
Our wellness pages are packed with everything from flotation therapy and the healing power of optimism to stem cell solutions and the new Connect Care app. And we’ve got luxury living covered, from a stunning tour of Woodland’s River View Ranch (list price $18 million) to incredible getaways, fashion and pearls. On the arts front, discover how locally exhibited artists use light, meet newcomer Earthlight Galleries and rediscover the recently renovated Utah Museum of Fine Arts. Read about an amazing collection of businesses and non-profits that make our state a more interesting and connected place (we’re talking everything from Escape Room and VOID virtual reality antics to sports integration efforts and Men4Ed—that’s dads supporting education). Last, but certainly not least, be sure to dig into delicious pieces on everything from vodka to dining, Viking style, at 8,700 feet.
I am so grateful to all our friends, mentors, clients and readers, who have made each and every one of these 25 years special. All of you deserve a big, bear hug—starting with my husband, Ron. Without his love, friendship and patience, this adventure would never have happened.
Here’s to infinite blue skies ahead.