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Whistler more family friendly this year

Teen concierges, tube park, winter carnival night designed to bring fun for whole family.

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By Alison Taylor

In less than five minutes it’s easy to see that 17-year-old Ben Podborski is passionate about his community.

And after living almost his whole life in Whistler, Podborski has a pretty good idea of what’s going on around town.

That’s why he was picked to be one of a handful of local teen concierges at the Four Seasons Resort Whistler.

His job, in between going to school at Whistler Secondary and ski racing with the Whistler Mountain Ski Club, is to help young guests decide what to do when they’re here for a visit. And Podborski said there’s no shortage of things to keep teens, tweens and kids entertained — the arcade, the movie theatre, the ice rink, and the teen lounge at Millennium Place, he said, just to name a few.

“There’s tons of things to do here,” he said. “All day, every day, and even into then evening. It’s a lot of fun.”

Whether it’s the teen concierge program at the Four Seasons or the new tube park at Whistler Blackcomb or the weekly winter carnival night on the driving range, Whistler has a new focus as a resort this year. More than ever before it’s family friendly.

That’s the way Tourism Whistler and other partners are actively promoting the resort.

“Research tells us that…family specific marketing is a great opportunity,” said Oliver Flaser, director of marketing for Tourism Whistler.

In December, running in conjunction with the opening of the Whistler Blackcomb tube park, Tourism Whistler launched a campaign so kids could ski, stay and tube for free. Flaser doesn’t have the exact numbers of how many families with kids took them up on the offer but he said it was successful. It not only drove home the message that the tube park was open, which is a family activity, but also that families could get a deal, too.

“When you’re spending a few thousand dollars as a family to go travel somewhere I think that it’s really important that people who are the decision makers in the family feel as though it is accessible, not just price-wise, but everything else (too),” said Flaser.

When Whistler Blackcomb’s tube park opened in December it was an instant hit for people of all ages. It has become an activity that not only young people can enjoy, but also the young at heart.

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