By Ann Butler
In 1982, Jim “Hoody” Hards hired recent Durango High School graduate Mike McCormack as a lift operator and ticket checker at Purgatory Ski Area. Thirty-four years later, the two are being inducted into the Durango Winter Sports Foundation’s Hall of Fame.
Between them, they held numerous jobs at the resort as it became Durango Mountain Resort and transitioned back to Purgatory Resort. McCormack rose to senior vice president of mountain operations, while Hards became vice president of base operations and Durango Mountain Land. If you have enjoyed a day on the mountain, the work these two men have done is what made it so great.
Their induction will take place at the Durango Winter Sports Gala, which starts at 5:30 p.m. Saturday and includes dinner and dancing to Vanilla Pop. Held in Purgy’s at the resort, it gets everyone in the mood for winter.
In addition to celebrating the inductees, the evening raises money for scholarships for students participating in freestyle skiing, snowboarding, Alpine and freeride skiing and the Nordic ski team. Skiing is not an inexpensive sport, and the foundation opens the doors for more students to participate.
Tickets are $100 and are available at http://purgatoryskiteam.org/event_registration/.
And the next time you ski down McCormack’s Maze or Hoody’s off the Legends Express, now you’ll know about their namesakes.
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