Lake Tahoe is one of the finalists in bidding to host ESPN's X Games beginning in 2015.
The popular extreme sporting event has had a lasting impact on winter sports. The emergence terrain parks that are part of almost any winter resort now can be traced to the games' popularity.
"The revolution that was started was really started in the design of the X Games venues," says Squaw Valley CEO and President Andy Wirth. "The event itself continues to evolve and we're thrilled to be potentially part of that evolution."
And, if they come here, they're expected to have an impact far beyond these slopes. They would mean millions of dollars to the local economy during the games themselves, but their effect could be expected to last a lot longer.
"Having that connection with ESPN and the X Games and big time sporting events is something this region is capable of doing and is interested in doing more of," says Andy Chapman of the North Tahoe Chamber of Commerce.
The events would be held at Squaw Valley and at Heavenly at South Shore. Which would be held where is still to be determined, but apparently environmental impact will be an important issue throughout.
"There's nothing we would do that would have a net negative impact on the lake or the quality of life in this region," says Wirth. "With that said, when you look at all we have to offer, we have a unique proposition."
The effort to bring the games here involves not only the resorts, but also the business community. The success of that kind of area wide effort is something Tahoe could point to when next it competes for the biggest event of all--the Winter Olympics.
The X Games are currently hosted in Aspen, Colorado which is bidding again. Also competing are Park City, Utah and Quebec City, Canada.
A final decision is expected by late Spring.
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