[R21R, Arizona Snowbowl] couldn't be sitting prettier, in a time where corporate giants like Intrawest are canning employees. Season pass sales are way up from last year, economists are projecting an upward trend in day trips trips, and some 400 jobs need filling to keep up with the demand.

If you're looking for seasonal work (or just laid off from their current jobs), head down south. Snowbowl's staffing.

Arizona Snowbowl General Manager J. R. Murray said, "In only two other years has Snowbowl sold more season passes than this one. That tells us that even in tough economic times people invest in recreational and family experiences. History has shown that skiers will ski in a recession."

Northern Arizona University Professor of Economics Dr. Ronald Gunderson agrees. "Skiers from the Phoenix region and other locations throughout Arizona who previously undertook more expensive ski trips out-of-state may decide to travel shorter distances this year to pursue skiing opportunities. This should increase the attractiveness of local ski resorts such as Arizona Snowbowl and also benefit Flagstaff businesses."

Perhaps the most encouraging news at a time when unemployment has hit a 14-year high, Snowbowl needs to fill hundreds of jobs, and fast. The ski area is poised to open (depending on snow) as early as mid December, and needs an army of lift operators, slope groomers, parking attendants, ski instructors, ski patrollers, cahiers, cooks, and rental technicians to be standing by ready to be deployed when the big storm hits.

Snowbowl officials are expecting to offer seasonal jobs to high school and college students, trailing spouses, those in struggling industries such as construction and real estate and those entering the workforce for the first time, in addition to returning employees.

Many former employees have launched their careers from the ski area. "A lot of our employees have developed their skills and moved on to larger ski resorts," said Murray. "Some of our notable former employees include Phil McNichol who was a Snowbowl ski instructor and then became the most successful U.S. Ski Team coach in history. Chris Thomsen, one of the top ski instructors in the Rocky Mountain region, grew up racing and instructing at Snowbowl. Brad Stewart and Brian Harper, both pioneers in the snowboarding industry, convinced us to introduce snowboarding here while attending NAU."

Call (928) 779-1951 for more information about the Arizona Snowbowl.