Winter Park's ‘Eskimo Club' to shut down after 79 years

WINTER PARK – Winter Park’s decades-old Eskimo Club is going cold this upcoming ski season.

The program teaches kids to ski and has operated at Winter Park Resort since 1939.

The club would bring kids from the metro area to Winter Park by train on Saturday.

According to the club’s owner, Annie Bulkley, Winter Park did not have enough room for the club anymore with all the growth.

Denver7 spoke with Katie and Tom Branch, previous owners of the club for 15 years about the club shutting down.

“All these hundreds of children carrying their skis over their shoulders, it was organized chaos,” Katie said, as she reflects on her time running the club.

“Thousands of kids went through the program,” Tom said. “Those things we can look at and be glad we were involved in them.”

Bulkley wrote in a statement about the decision on the club’s website:

Winter Park needs the Eskimo Headquarters room for their employee lockers, and there is no more available space that will work for the Club's needs. Our Eskimo team has given it much consideration, and Winter Park has been helpful in trying to make it work but I have come to the extremely difficult decision that we would no longer be able to give our Eskimo Club members the safe, quality, affordable program that we have been known for without a place at the base for the children to come for assistance as most of them are bus riders without their parents.

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