SALT LAKE CITY — While the sun may be shining on dry terra firma, the state tourism office wants people thinking about heavy snowfall on powdery slopes.
The Utah Office of Tourism unveiled its winter advertising campaign Wednesday. The $1.1 million campaign includes three new 30-second commercials that will rotate on 13 national cable networks beginning in January.
"The ski industry is a major part of our vibrant tourism industry," said Lt. Gov. Greg Bell, speaking at a news conference in the Gold Room at the state Capitol.
For the third straight year, the popular TV spots will feature the humorous "snowflakes" touting the virtues of "the greatest snow on earth." Print and online ads for the winter campaign began running this month marketing the state's 14 ski resorts.
"The new television commercials emphasize Utah's accessibility and the close proximity of our resorts to Salt Lake City International Airport," said Leigh von der Esch, managing director of the state tourism office.
The television ads will air on national cable channels from Jan. 2 to Jan. 23, she said.
The networks include A&E, Bravo, ESPN, ESPN2, Food Network, Fox News, History, MSNBC, National Geographic, Nat Geo Wild, Planet Green, Investigation Discovery and Discovery Science.
For the first time, the ads will be posted on both the Office of Tourism website and Ski Utah's site, where the public will have the opportunity to vote on their favorite spots as well as enter to win free ski gear from Ski Utah. Winners will be announced Dec. 17 and the two top vote-getters will be selected to air nationally during the month of January, von de Esch explained.
This season will also mark the inaugural year for Eagle Point, the state's 14th ski resort, scheduled to open on Dec. 15. The resort is located 18 miles east of Beaver about 200 miles south of Salt Lake City.
The state ski industry was also bolstered by recent news that eight of the state's 14 winter resorts were ranked among the top 30 in North America, according to a Ski Magazine reader survey.
For the fourth consecutive year, Deer Valley Resort topped the list, while Park City ranked fifth, The Canyons was No. 18, followed by Snowbird at No. 19, with Snowbasin at No. 27, Alta at No. 28 and Solitude ranked 30th.
Here are links to the three videos on YouTube: