Management changes at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park and Iron Mountain Hot Springs demonstrate companies’ promote-from-within policies

Employee promotions at Glenwood Caverns and Iron Mountain Hot Springs

Left to right: Beau Haines, Michelle Alford, Corinne Deraddo and Mike Besaw

Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park in Glenwood Springs, Colorado, has announced promotions for managers there and at Iron Mountain Hot Springs, which it operates, once again demonstrating its commitment to promoting from within.

“Finding and keeping outstanding employees is both challenging and rewarding,” explained Nancy Heard, who oversees Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park and Iron Mountain Hot Springs. “We’ve worked hard to become an employer of choice in the community. Because of that, we’ve been able to attract some stellar people to our team, including the five who are now taking on bigger challenges.”

James McGoodwin

James McGoodwin

Michelle Alford has been promoted to attractions manager at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park. She joined the company in 2013 as a manager on duty, bringing with her 17 years’ experience at Aspen Skiing Company. In her new role, Alford is responsible for ensuring the safe operation of 12 attractions and for managing close to 80 people in the attractions department.

Mike Besaw has been named general manager of Iron Mountain Hot Springs. Besaw joined Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park as maintenance manager in 2013. Prior to that, he had six years’ experience in ride maintenance at Elitch Gardens and more than ten years of management experience in the hospitality industry.

Corinne Deraddo, who joined Iron Mountain Hot Springs as a property supervisor in 2015, is now the marketing and sales representative for Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park and the Iron Mountain Hot Springs. Her background includes more than 20 years’ experience in retail buying and operations management.

Beau Haines, who has worked in several part-time positions at both companies the past few years, has been hired as the tram and transportation manager. Haines has extensive experience in customer service and leadership, with more than seven years as an auto service manager. He will be responsible for front gate operations at the tram base and operating the tram and vehicles that transport guests up and down the mountain.

James McGoodwin has been promoted to maintenance manager at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park and is responsible for maintaining the park’s buildings, grounds, attractions, cave, tramway and vehicles, and for managing the maintenance staff. He started with the company in 2011 as a college intern, then joined full-time upon his graduation in 2012. Since then, he has served as attractions supervisor, attractions manager and assistant maintenance manager.

“I’m excited for Mike, James, Michelle, Corinne and Beau as they take on these new roles, and am confident that they will all make significant contributions to our team,” Heard added.

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Enter the “Glenwood Caverns Makes Me Smile” photo contest!

Want to win an Annual Pass? Show us your smiles!

Glenwood Caverns Makes Me SmileOur mission is to make people smile. Let us know how we’re doing by sharing your smiling pics from a visit to Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park, and you’ll be entered to win an Annual Thrill Pass!

Glenwood Caverns Makes Me Smile Giant SwingIf you love spending a day at the park, you’ll really love our Annual Thrill Pass. At just $99 for adults and $89 for kids 3 to 12, a pass pays for itself on the second visit. It’s valid for unlimited visits throughout the year and includes a discount at our restaurants and gift shops.

You can win one by sharing a photo on our Facebook page that you’ve taken at the park that demonstrates our mission. The bigger the smile, the better! Include the hashtag #GlenwoodCavernsMakesMeSmile. After you post the pic, ask your friends to vote for it with a like. We’ll take the number of likes into account when we choose the winners.

We’ll choose weekly winners during the month, one each on April 8, 15, 22 and 29, 2016.

Glenwood Caverns Makes Me Smile Alpine Coaster

Official Rules:

  • The photo must belong to you
  • You must have permission to use the image of anyone in the photograph
  • Photos must be family-friendly
  • Watermarked photos are acceptable, and you may use filters to enhance the image
  • Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park has the right to reuse photo entries, and we will always include credit to the photographer
  • You can enter as often as you’d like
  • Winners are selected at the sole discretion of Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park
  • Winners must be at least 21 years old on the date of the prize being awarded and must be a resident of the United States
  • This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook
  • By entering, you release Facebook of all liability associated with this contest

Now, let’s see those smiles!

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First Day of Spring!

Happy Spring Equinox here in Glenwood Springs, Colorado, and around the world! The Spring Equinox marks the time that our Sun crosses the celestial equator (the imaginary line in the sky above the Earth’s equator) from south to north.

The Spring Equinox is only one of two times a year (the Fall Equinox being the other) where the tilt of the Earth’s axis is directly perpendicular to the Sun. On any other day of the year, either the Northern Hemisphere or the Southern Hemisphere tilts somewhat towards the Sun.

Many cultures around the world honor the Equinox with a Spring celebration of some kind. In Thailand, Songkran Water Festival celebrants ring in Spring by throwing water (hence the name!), visiting elders, and going to Buddhist monasteries. Samana Santa (an important holiday in Mexico, Spain and other largely Catholic countries) involves parades, fireworks, and ceremonies. Hindu cultures throw colored powder at one another during Holi, the festival of color and love. In the United States, Spring is typically marked with Easter celebrations and brightly painted Easter eggs.

We’re celebrating an early Spring Equinox this year (the earliest since 1896, actually!) as well as an early Easter on March 27. Up at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park we’ll be enjoying Easter Sunday with the Easter Bunny hopping around the Park for photos and drawings for Annual Pass winners! We’ll also be handing out Easter eggs filled with candy and stickers (there is no Easter egg hunt this year).

The Park is already buzzing with activity, with many schools out for Spring Break and sunny skies making for a fun day of exploring the Park. There’s still plenty of snow on Mt. Sopris and the surrounding mountains, making for dramatic views from the scenic tram. We’re now open every day, from 10am-5pm Mondays through Fridays and 10am-6pm Saturday & Sunday.

Whatever Spring means for you–whether it’s an Easter event, a vacation, spring cleaning, or just a feeling of renewal–we hope you enjoy all that it has to offer and make the most of it this Spring Equinox!

Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park Thrill Ride Soaring Eagle Zip Ride

Zip into Spring at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park!

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Last Chance for Winter on the Mountain and Friday Afternoon Club Festivities!

We’re coming up on the last weekend for two festive events in Glenwood Springs, Colorado, at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park: Winter on the Mountain and the Winter Friday Afternoon Club! The last Winter on the Mountain for the season will take place February 26-28, and the final winter FAC is this Friday, February 26.

Alpine Coaster at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park

Lights on the Alpine Coaster make for a magical, zooming ride!

It’s been a great winter season filled with lights, music and thrills. The second year of Winter on the Mountain brought even more joy to the season, with the addition of holiday music throughout December. Park-goers were dazzled by 500,000 lights and a giant musical tree that performed choreographed light shows. Lighted rides and caves elevated the park experience!

The Winter FAC brought local favorites to Glenwood Caverns, including soulful guitarist Gerry Goodman, Americana maestro Frank Martin, and accomplished long-time local Chris Bank. The eclectic gypsy-reggae band Painters Stage will close out the 2015-16 season of FAC, which has become a gathering spot for locals and visitors to unwind after the week and watch the incredible mountain-top sunset. The FAC offers a free tram ride to the top after 4pm on Friday, if you bring in the ad in Friday’s paper (or print it off here).

Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park tram, sunset

The tram offers spectacular sunset views, the perfect way to end the week!

Take advantage of the mild February weather and come up to see us! Find out more information on Glenwood Caverns hours and tickets. Hope to see you for one more weekend of Winter on the Mountain and FAC fun!

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It’s Game Time!

The big game is almost here! Whether you bleed Broncos orange and blue, will be rooting for the Carolina Panthers, or are just in it for the snacks, Sunday is a good chance to kick back, relax, and enjoy the day.

Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park is the spot to be for the Broncos-Panthers showdown! We’ll be offering appetizer specials, game-time drink specials for kids of all ages with a spinning drink wheel, and football face painting for the kids. Get a free tram ride to the top by printing off this coupon and bringing it with you (or showing it on your phone).

In celebration of the big day, here are a few random fun facts about this year’s game:
• Behind Thanksgiving, tomorrow will be the second-highest day for food consumption in the country. Americans will consume around one billion chicken wings, four million pizzas, and 325 million gallons of beer!

• For the Star Wars fans out there, Denver quarterback Peyton Manning was once named by a Star Wars author as the NFL member “most likely to be a Jedi knight.” Additionally, his nickname with the Colts was R2D2!

• Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton is a pescatarian; he eats fish but not meat.

• This Sunday will mark the first time that two quarterbacks who were No. 1 overall draft picks will face off in the biggest football event of the year. Payton Manning was a No. 1 draft pick in 1998, and Cam Newton was a No. 1 draft pick in 2011.

• Additionally, their age difference is a new record: at 39 years and 26 years respectively, Manning and Newton’s age gap is the largest ever between quarterbacks at the big game.

• Finally, a 30-second commercial spot during the game will cost advertisers a record-breaking $5 million dollars!

Sunday’s weather forecast in Glenwood Springs, CO is meant to be around 40 degrees and sunny; it’s downright balmy weather for February! It’s a great opportunity to come up and enjoy the Alpine Coaster and Soaring Eagle Zip Ride before the game starts at 4:30. Click here for more info on tickets and hours. Hope to see you up here for the big game!

Super Bowl 50 Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park

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2015: What a Year!

It was an eventful year for Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park in Glenwood Springs, CO! As 2015 comes to a close, we’re taking a look at everything that happened, from new beginnings to continuing old traditions. We’re celebrating awards, milestones, events, and a year of bustling activity:

Iron Mountain Hot Springs opened! Co-owned by Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park owners Steve and Jeannie Beckley with Mogli and Coop Cooper, the Hot Springs were a big project that finally came alive in August. Nestled next to the Colorado River, the 16 mineral pools and large family pool provide relaxation and rejuvenation in a whole new setting.

Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park decorated ghost tree

The Mountain Fall Festival, which included spooky Halloween fun, was a highlight of 2015

We held the first annual Mountain Fall Festival. Running through the month of October and culminating with Halloween festivities like haunted cave tours and trick or treating, the Fall Festival was a lot of fun and provided extra weekend entertainment for the community.

In May, Utah resident Tamara Ames became the millionth person to ride the Alpine Coaster, coinciding with the 10th birthday for the Alpine Coaster. It’s amazing that the Alpine Coaster has provided a million zooming thrills, and we can’t wait for the next million!

The Park was honored with some prestigious awards this year. We were recognized as a Dream Big Blue Ribbon Award Winner and as one of seven regional finalists for the Dream Big Small Business of the Year by the U.S. Chamber. The awards showcase small businesses that strengthen and give back to the community, and stand out for their exceptional business practices. We were also named Glenwood Chamber’s Top Brass Business of the Year!

Additionally, Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park picked up several Post Independent Local’s Choice Awards in June, including Golds for Best Local Attraction, Best Place for Family Fun, and Best Place to Watch the Sunset.

As icing on the cake, Glenwood Caverns was also one of four finalists in Sunset Magazine’s Travel Awards in the Family Fun category!

Travel Channel show Glenwood Canyon Flyer

Travel Channel film crew at work on an episode of "Thrill Factor" at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park

In August, the Park was featured on an episode of the Travel Channel show “Thrill Factor.” In the episode, hosts Kari Byron and Tory Belleci experimented with sensory deprivation while riding the Glenwood Canyon Flyer. It was a lot of fun having the hosts and film crew here, and we hope they come back again!

Winter on the Mountain returned for a second year. Running from November through February, Winter on the Mountain brightens up the season with 500,000 lights, winter activities, and lighted rides and caves. We love how the Park turns into a winter wonderland!

The Park was alive with music. Music on the Mountain came back for a seventh year and showcased great bands all summer long. The Friday Afternoon Club continues to run in summer and winter with local acts like Painters Stage and Gerry Goodman. This winter we also added a special holiday music series which made the season even more festive.

The community united to give back! It was the second year for Turkey Tram-a-Ganza in November, which donated over 250 pounds of turkey to Lift-Up for local families. Music on the Mountain collected more than 10,000 cans of food for Lift-Up, bringing the total since 2009 to 53,770 cans!

Finally, while the park was closed in November for maintenance, the Alpine Coaster was upgraded with all new cars and a new distance-control system. A bullwheel bearing has been replaced on the tram, which was a huge job. Concrete and railing work was completed in the caves. Some interior painting was done and the park was thoroughly cleaned inside and out. It feels spiffed up, fresh and ready for the year ahead!

We’re so thankful for a great year, and we look forward to making more people smile in 2016. We hope to see you at the Park for more fun and adventure in the New Year!

Alpine Coaster

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Holiday Cheer and Winter Fun!

Alpine Coaster at night wiht lights

The Alpine Coaster is lit up for a magical, zooming ride!

Christmas Week is almost here! With fresh snow and holiday spirit, Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park is definitely feeling like a winter wonderland. Winter on the Mountain is in full swing with 500,000 lights, a giant musical Christmas tree, lighted thrill rides, fire pits and s’mores, and much more.

Santa Claus Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park

Santa and Mrs. Claus are frequent visitors to Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park. Photo credit: Randy Schriever

Santa and Mrs. Claus are regular visitors to the Park (check out our interview with the jolly man himself)! We wanted to make sure that all the kids who want to sit on St. Nick’s lap and tell him their Christmas wishes will have the chance, so we’ve extended Santa’s hours at the North Pole. He will be available on December 18 and 19 from 5 to 8 pm, December 20 from 3 to 6 pm, and December 21, 22 and 23 from 5 to 8 pm.

The mountain is alive with holiday music! December 19, 20 and 21 will showcase accomplished pianist and singer John Riger, and December 22 and 23 features the O & O Duo. This musical duo is comprised of Colorado native, multi-instrumentalist and singer Obadiah Jones and Israeli singer Orian Peled. This will be the last weekend of holiday music, so don’t miss the chance to see these engaging, talented performers!

We are also continuing the weekly Friday Afternoon Club, a free concert every Friday from 5 to 8:30 pm. This Friday, the band Painters Stage will bring their reggae tunes and gypsy rhythms mountain-top for a fun and energetic show.

We hope to see you at the Park for Christmas cheer and good times! Click here for more information on tickets and hours. Happy holidays!

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10 reasons to spend a day (or two) in Glenwood Springs during your Colorado ski trip

Glenwood Caverns and Iron Mountain Hot SpringsAdd some “whee,” “ooh” and “aah” to your Colorado ski vacation with a day trip to Glenwood Springs, home of Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park and the Iron Mountain Hot Springs. There are seven mountains — Vail, Aspen, Aspen Highlands, Beaver Creek, Snowmass, Buttermilk and Sunlight — located within an hour of the park, making it an easy way to mix things up a bit this year. Breckenridge, Winter Park, Powderhorn, Steamboat, Copper Mountain, Keystone, Ski Cooper and SolVista are within two hours. Here are 10 reasons you’ll want to spend a day here:

  1. Colorado’s newest hot springs destination, the Iron Mountain Hot Springs, opened this summer with 16 hot mineral water pools on the bank of the Colorado River. (aah!)
  2. The state’s longest Alpine Coaster is located at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park, and it races 3,400 feet down the mountain with hairpin turns, bumps and waves. (whee!)
  3. The Adventure Park’s Winter on the Mountain includes a dazzling display of a half million lights covering the buildings, rides and trees, plus fire pits for roasting s’mores and a giant, musical Christmas tree. (ooh!)
  4. There’s a steamy freshwater family pool and a jetted whirlpool spa at the Iron Mountain Hot Springs that the kids will love. (whee!)
  5. Friday Afternoon Club on the Mountain at Glenwood Caverns features live music, drink specials around a cozy fire and free tram rides, making it fun and easy on the wallet. (ooh!)
  6. The soaking pools at Iron Mountain Hot Springs are filled with pure mineral water — no chemicals — and range from 99 to 108°F for a rejuvenating après-ski experience. (aah!)
  7. The Soaring Eagle Zip Ride at the Adventure Park provides and exhilarating ride with beautiful views, day or night. (whee!)
  8. The Sopris Café at the Iron Mountain Hot Springs serves fresh, delicious food and a variety of hot and cold drinks, including beer, wine and cocktails. (ooh!)
  9. It’s always 52 degrees and humid inside Glenwood Caverns and the Historic Fairy Caves, which feels wonderfully warm on cold winter days. (aah!)
  10. You can save 20% on admission to both attractions with a Ride & Relax Combo Package. (whee!)

There are two options for the Ride & Relax Combo Packages, both of which include a day pass for the Iron Mountain Hot Springs. Choose a Funday Pass for Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park, which includes unlimited access to the park’s winter attractions, for just $48 per adult and $39 per child (ages 3 to 12), or a tram and cave pass for the Adventure Park for $38 per adult and $29 per child. Passes must be used within seven days of purchase. Available at either location.

Winter on the Mountain at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park is open 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday through Sunday, and closed Monday through Thursday, through Feb. 28, 2016. During the holidays, it will be open daily Dec. 18 to Jan. 3. It will close at 5 p.m. Christmas Eve and be closed Christmas Day. More information about the park, including hours of operation and a list of which attractions are open, can be found at GlenwoodCaverns.com or by calling 800-530-1635 or 970-945-4228, ext. 0.

Iron Mountain Hot Springs is open 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. It will close at 5 p.m. Christmas Eve and be closed Christmas Day. More information is available at IronMountainHotSprings.com or by calling 970-945-4766.

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Giving Thanks

The eve of Thanksgiving is a good time to stop and take stock of all we’re thankful for in life. At Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park, we have plenty of thanks to give! Here’s just a few of the many things we are grateful for, this Thanksgiving and all year long:

Town of Glenwood overview

Bird's eye view of beautiful Glenwood Springs

1. Living in a beautiful place and being part of a fun community. There’s a reason that Glenwood Springs, CO was voted one of the top 5 Best Places to Live by Outside Magazine. Our residents like to work hard and play hard, and it makes for a vibrant, lively community full of activity. Whether it’s rafters and kayakers cruising down the Colorado River on a summer day, bikers buzzing up the Rio Grande Bike Path on a glorious fall afternoon, skiers and snowboarders getting in powder turns at Sunlight Mountain Resort, or springtime shoppers in downtown Glenwood Springs, the town is alive year-round.

2. Our company family. It takes a lot of people to make Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park run smoothly, and every day our close-knit team works hard to ensure that visitors have the best possible experience. Their friendly, smiling faces make the Park a welcoming place, and their dedicated work ensures that the Park is always operating safely and effectively. We truly couldn’t do it without them!

3. Having the opportunity to give back. With the recent Turkey Tram-A-Ganza, we were able to help donate over 250 pounds of turkey to Lift-Up for families in need. Our Can-for-a-Tram program during the Music on the Mountain concert series donated 10,172 cans of food for Lift-Up this year. And at last Friday’s Iron Mountain Hot Springs benefit, we were able to collect another 544 cans!  We love how the people in the community rally together to help each other out.

visitors in mineral pool

Visitors to Iron Mountain Hot Springs relax in mineral pool

4. Seeing Iron Mountain Hot Springs get off the ground. A partnership with the owners of Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park, the Iron Mountain Hot Springs were a dream for many years. In 2015 they finally became a reality! Soaking in the healing Hot Springs, right next to the Colorado River, is just about the most relaxing and rejuvenating experience one can have, and it is very fulfilling to see the dream come to life.

Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park cave tour

Family explores the historic Fairy Caves

5. Our visitors! We love seeing the excited faces of kids and adults stepping off the mountain-top tram and trying to decide what to do first. We love hearing the exhilarated screams of Giant Canyon Swing and Cliffhanger Roller Coaster riders. We love showing people around the historic Fairy Caves. Most of all, we love being a place that families and friends can come to for a break from the “real world” and just have some fun!

We hope you have a safe and happy Thanksgiving. We’ll be closed Thanksgiving Day so our employees can spend the holiday with their families, but we’ll be back open on Friday, November 27.  Come up for some post-turkey fun and adventure!

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Time for Turkey Tram-a-Ganza to benefit LIFT-UP!

Turkey Tram-a-Ganza at Glenwood Caverns Adventure ParkGlenwood Caverns Adventure Park is teaming up with KSNO and Bighorn Toyota again this year for Turkey Tram-a-Ganza on Sunday, Nov. 15, to benefit LIFT-UP’s local food pantries. KSNO’s Elizabeth Drolet will board the Iron Mountain Tramway in Glenwood Springs, Colorado, at noon for a live broadcast and will keep riding until 500 pounds of turkey, or roughly 45 turkeys, have been donated.

Turkey Tram-a-Ganza begins at noon and continues until 4 p.m. To encourage the community to participate, Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park will contribute up to four free tram rides for each donated turkey or $20 donation, plus an entry in a drawing for two Annual Thrill Passes or four day passes to the Iron Mountain Hot Springs. Bighorn Toyota will have a truck in the parking lot at the tram base at 51000 Two Rivers Plaza Road where people can drop off frozen turkeys, register for the drawing and pick up the free tram passes. The free tram rides are valid that day only and can be used to enjoy the Winter on the Mountain light display, giant musical Christmas tree and the views of Glenwood Springs. The Lookout Grille will be open for lunch and dinner as well.

“This event was a lot of fun last year, and we were able to collect 33 turkeys for LIFT-UP,” said Nancy Heard, general manager for Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park. “Our goal for this year is to help even more of our friends and neighbors in need before the holidays arrive. We hope everyone in the valley will consider donating to LIFT-UP during Turkey Tram-a-Ganza. It’s a great cause, and we’re excited to be a part of it once again.”

Turkey Tram-a-Ganza at Glenwood Caverns Adventure ParkGuests who donate turkeys can also enjoy the park’s rides and attractions that day with a Winter Funday Pass. Just $25 with the free tram ride, it includes both walking cave tours and unlimited access to the Alpine Coaster and Soaring Eagle Zip Ride, both of which are lighted for rides after dark, the laser tag arena and the 4D Motion Theater. The last tram ride up the mountain will be at 8:30 p.m.; the park will close at 9.

LIFT-UP is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing essential humanitarian assistance in the communities it serves, with food pantries in Aspen, Basalt, Carbondale, Glenwood Springs, New Castle, Rifle and Parachute. Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park also supports LIFT-UP through its Music on the Mountain can-for-a-tram concert series, which has brought in more than 53,000 cans of food for the food pantries since 2009.

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