Ski Santa Fe holds job fair ahead of upcoming season

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SANTA FE, N.M. – Ski Santa Fe is hosting another job fair this weekend to fill spots on the slopes and inside the lodge.

"We’re out here, we’re trying to make it happen, and we’re hoping to see everyone on Thanksgiving,” said Ben Abruzzo with Ski Santa Fe.

The popular ski area is scheduled to open Thanksgiving Day but only if there’s enough workers to make it happen.

“We’re now bringing on our kind of front-line workers who are returners, and we are bringing them back at a higher rate than we would have in the past, so they seem to be coming back,” said Abruzzo.

Abruzzo runs the ski area and he said they raised the minimum wage to $13 an hour this year – just above Santa Fe’s living wage – to get ahead of that nationwide labor shortage. He said he’s confident there will be plenty of people to work the slopes, but the lodge is a different story.

“I think some of our departments like food service will probably struggle like every one else in the food service industry,” Abruzzo said.

But there’s another uphill battle this year – the weather.

"I expect it to start snowing any day now, and the big snowfall will be when it happens,” said Abruzzo.

Forecasters say New Mexico is heading into another La Niña pattern, which usually means less snow. But Abruzzo said he’s not worried.

"You know, we’ve had plenty of La Niña’s that turn into great ski years,” he said. "I mean, it’s only been 1 year in 20 where we truly haven’t had snow. I don’t predict that at all. The meteorologists aren’t predicting that, they’re all saying we will have a winter, so I think it’ll be fine.”

And that’s good – because a lot of New Mexicans are itching to hit the slopes.

"We’re seeing record sales on season passes, all the other ski areas are as well. I think the general consensus is that people want to get outside. They want to go have fun in the mountains."

The Ski Santa Fe job fair will be held at La Casa Lodge on Friday, Nov. 2, from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. And on Saturday, Nov. 6, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.