With the 2018 Olympics recently behind us and the U.S. Alpine Championships approaching, we interviewed Sun Valley Associate and Olympic Athlete, Terry Palmer. Terry has been an integral part of our community and our ski town for almost 50 years! He and his wife Gretchen have raised three children here, all ski racers, and Terry is a supporter of multiple local ski foundations, including the Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation (SVSEF) and the Bob Beattie Ski Foundation.
Terry has been working with Sun Valley Company (a self-proclaimed “cheerleader”) to help bring support and attention to the upcoming U.S. Alpine Championships which will be held in Sun Valley from March 21-26, 2018.
1- Where are you from originally?
North Conway, NH
2- How long have you lived in Sun Valley?
44 years, I moved hear in ’74.
3- How long have you been a skier?
A long time!
4- You’re a former Olympic Athlete…What was your event and when/where did you compete?
Sapporo ’72, Slalom – 16th
5- How would you say that experience has shaped your passion for the sport?
The Olympics are special in so many ways, and the Sapporo Games were special to me, as it was only a seven-man squad. Three of that seven included me, my brother Tyler, and David Currier and we were all from North Conway, so that was fun and somewhat remarkable for three athletes to come from the same small New England town.
6- It’s so great that we can bring events like the U.S. Alpine Championships here to Sun Valley. What would you say you feel are the benefits of hosting events like this here?
The exposure of our town and mountain to the World’s & America’s best athletes (Michaela & Lindsey), parents and coaches is a huge marketing tool. Our ‘image’ is elevated when we host world class events. Note & remember that we had not had a world class alpine event since 1980, and then we hosted the ’16 Alpine Championships in ’16, which was very well received by the athletes and our community. So, in reality, we were somewhat off the grid for many years. I think the SV Co. deserves big kudos and thanks for hosting and supporting the sport of ski racing. We are one of the best ski resorts in the world and we need to share what we have here.
7- What do you think the best part of hosting a ski event is for the town?
Certainly the exposure of Baldy and its world class challenge is beneficial, plus I believe that an event as prestigious as the U.S. Nationals is fun for all. However, I think the best part is that visitors will come to realize that we are a ski resort ‘gem’ (albeit hidden) with a comfortable, honest and genuine mountain community. Our locals in SV/Ketchum & the WRV are welcoming and are just very comfortable, and visitors sense that– we are definitely a real and authentic mountain community that likes to share our Idaho paradise.
8- What would you like to see more of in our ski town? (Besides snow!)
As a partner with Sun Valley Associates Real Estate Brokerage, I really believe that our town is doing so many things right, my wife Gretchen and I feel very blessed to have raised our family here and to enjoy the environment we live in. It is truly a very special place. We as a town are lucky to be here, the adage “be careful what you wish for” resonates with me. Thoughtful and consistent growth is paramount.
9- What’s your favorite part about being a skier in Sun Valley?
The ease of it all. I can take an hour and half lunch break and get 4-5 runs in. I can leave my office at 11:30 and be back in the office by 1:00 with 15,000 vertical. Not bad!
10 – What do you most hope to see at the U.S. Alpine Nationals event?
My goal is to bring this awesome sport to our Valley and get 100% community participation. This is a fun event with the best athletes in the world, and I’d love to see everyone from Carey to Stanley (and everyone in between) come watch and enjoy the party! It’s going to be an awesome and tough course, and I really look forward to having such a big event and athletes right here in our town.