Teacup Nordic Capital Campaign

Thank you for taking time to learn more about Teacup Nordic's capital campaign!  

For only the second time in Teacup's 44 year history, we are excited to be working with our community to make key investments to strengthen and secure our beloved nonprofit.  From better, safer and more reliable skiing to more inviting, rewarding and plentiful programs for all ages, our future is ready to be realized.  

We would be honored to have you join us in setting the tracks for the next generation!  We look forward to hearing from you.

Paul Blackburn & Noel Johnson

Capital Campaign Co-Chairs


The Board of Directors is pleased to present this proposal to strengthen and secure Teacup Nordic's future.  

Guided by listening, research and planning conversations across our skiing community, we are excited to announce this two season, $2 million dollar campaign towards:

  • A more sustainable and reliable daily operation. No longer will we contract out the grooming, nor ask one person to wake up at 2am to prepare our venue for the hundreds of visitors.  This translates to acquiring our own grooming assets: low-emission PistenBully 100 machines, building their maintenance shelters and to hiring several talented, trusted operators.
  • A more self sustaining business plan.  We want to improve our outcomes and lower our long term costs to ensure long run sustainability.  Instead of renting or contracting out for services, we are acquiring the support trucks and myriad heavy equipment needed to care for our venue and groomers.  We are building adequate restroom facilities and replacing old snowmobiles.  And we are replacing many of the 40 year old, under-snow trail structures that ensure you have enjoyable, safe trails.
  • A more welcoming, accessible and safer experience. No longer will a visitor's initial experience be a bit confusing and hidden.  We will establish a clear sense of place by broadening the area between our parking lot and cabin (Your kids' programs will be easier to find if you're late.) We will widen existing trail bottlenecks and improve venue signage.  We will staff communications to be more responsive.  And we will make changes to let us host events according to FIS/US Ski standards while concurrently being open for general skiing.
  • A more tailored programatic experience for all ages.  We want our community to look forward to positive, reliable, fully trained and SafeSport certified expert coaching.  We will offer clear progression and best-in-class learning and training for ages 6 to 18+ along with opportunities to foster adults' interest in becoming better skiers (i.e. "ski school") and enjoy a supportive club identity (Go Teacup / Mt. Hood Nordic!)
  • (And of course) A more plentiful and safer parking experience.   We want to ensure you can arrive and easily access the fun, healthy and socially positive spirit that makes Teacup Nordic so special!
We welcome your feedback! And thank you for your generosity. 
Respectfully submitted,
Your Board of Directors 

(Noel Johnson, Steve Hochman, Laura Davis, Sue Seyl, Ken Salzberg, Allison Crocker, Duncan Roberts, Tom Jeanne, Clint Harris, Dave Hawley, Chip Dickinson, Leif Hovin, Mariah Nichols





Frequently Asked Questions 

 We appreciate hearing from you; please keep the feedback coming via info@teacupnordic.com

How did the community help craft these proposals?

The actions to be funded by this campaign are those envisioned by you!  Refined by the supportive partnerships and nordic community that make Teacup great, the proposed improvements were established through a consultative, bottom-up approach.

  • We started two years ago via the 200+ individual skier voices we heard from by way of the interviews and surveys conducted by The Goodness Collaborative - a local consultancy engaged by your board to scope and prioritize "what's next" and "what's needed."  

  • From this, your board worked to identify common concerns, suggestions and trends.  Experience and leadership was hired via our new General Manager role.  Together, we spent last season working to communicate our envisioned changes and investments so that we might hear trailside feedback to refine our planning.

  • Concurrently, we talked to key outside partners, like the US Forest Service, our banks (Summit Bank and Consolidated Community Credit Union) and our regional ski association, clubs and venues.  We learned what has worked, what does not work, etc.  The skiing community writ. large is wonderfully sharing and supportive!  

  • We leveraged local expertise, but also engaged our sport's leading experts, like Allan Serrano who is our nation's Federation International Ski (FIS) Homologation expert and senior Technical Delegate (i.e. persons who know what venues should be, how they work best and where the future of our sport is headed....) 
  • We engaged Fundraising Nerd - a capital campaign consultancy to establish a data-driven fundraising size goal.  Basically, we attempted to establish reasonable expectations, informed by the collaborative knowledge that surrounds us and online, as to the collective wealth of our local community.  

  • Finally, scrutinized our plans to ensure any single investment action would help solve multiple defined needs.


What are Teacup Nordic's funding sources and options?


As a non-profit, Teacup Nordic’s shareholders are its users.  This means there are no private owners profiting from trail and program fees.  It also means we lack the normal source of investment funds to scale up and adapt.  As our region grows and as community expectations change, our operating and investment capital can only come from:


Trail passes, program fees, community apparel & event sales 


Individuals helping to hasten and magnify our impact  


Marketing relationships with lifestyle aligned companies


Grants for health, environment & local community 


Parking, power, etc. - infrastructure that serve Teacup, and beyond

 With this one time infusion of growth capital, our operating budget will be able to reach a self-sustaining level where the needed staffing and annual operating costs (including new investment, repair and replacement reserves) can be funded by reoccurring earned income revenues.  In this way, this campaign not only strengthens Teacup, but secures its economic future. 


How have you been preparing ahead of this capital campaign?

In preparation for the launch of this capital campaign, we have worked hard to develop and adjust our funding sources to ensure everyone is doing their part.  For example, we have:

  • Adjusted pricing to "current cost" rates to ensure those enjoying the day are paying for the costs of that day's operations. 

  • Invited value aligned corporate sponsors while improving our communications abilities so we can acknowledge their support and create a mutual benefit.

  • Fostered annual donor support via increased transparency and explicit asks for those who have more, to lean in.  

  • Redoubled efforts at local, state and federal levels to ensure government planning and funding conversations consider our community's needs and desires (this being most focused on transportation and parking needs.)

  • Utilized financing for the purchase of assets like our new groomers so that the costs of these long-lived machines will be funded by those who are enjoying the corduroy trails they create for the many years to come. 

In this way, we hope our capital campaign donors feel their investment is being respected.  We want you to feel comfortable knowing that "everyone is being asked to do their part" and that your investment really will strengthen and secure the future of skiing at Teacup Nordic.  

    It seems some investments have occurred, some are underway and some are planned; please clarify the status of things.

    For those investments you see today, like the new Pistenbully machines, we funded them mostly via equipment financing.  And so while you see them "in action" - this capital campaign still needs to raise the money to pay for them.  For other investments, we are concurrently pushing forward the multi-year regulatory process in hopes of having the approvals ready when we have the funds (and in many cases, the approvals require funds to be in hand.)  Finally, some objectives, like our expanded programs and coaching, are simply not yet paying for themselves.  But like any organization, we know we need to invest across quality and quantity to reach a scale that self-funds.    

    I don't like nonprofits using debt.

    We agree, but when external events made real the need for these large investments, we really had no risk but to accept this risk in order to keep providing our community the groomed trails and programs.  We are confident that our skiing community will step up to this need, and ask you to join us!