Aramark proud to continue long-standing partnership with City of Colorado Springs on Pikes Peak - America's Mountain
Dating back to 1994, Aramark has been an important part of this beloved, must-see destination for thousands of visitors. In Spring 2021, the highly anticipated new Summit Visitor Center will open to the delight of so many eager visitors and once again, Aramark will be a part of its historic opening. "Aramark is honored and proud of our partnership with the City of Colorado Springs and we look forward to the opportunity to welcome visitors to America's Mountain while providing them with a new experience at the Summit Visitor Center," said Bruce Fears, Aramark's leisure president.
In anticipation of the grand opening, Aramark has highlighted several enhancements visitors will enjoy in both the food & beverage and retail operations.
Food & Beverage Experience
As a visitor begins their journey towards Pikes Peak at 14,115 feet elevation, their first stop is the newly imagined Crystal Reservoir Store. The enhanced food and beverage offerings include locally made trail mix and most importantly hydration options, with a wide variety of locally sourced healthy beverages as well as traditional refreshments.
The last stop before the summit is at Glen Cove. The newly remodeled cafe features Colorado-sourced offerings including coffee, hot chocolate, tea, plus cold, refreshing beverages with seasonal fruit infused sparkling water and fresh-made signature lemonade. At the Sweet Shop the selection of treats is too tempting to pass up: gourmet chocolates, gelato in cups and cones, gelato shakes, signature fudge, and a water refill station.
At the Summit Visitor Center, variety, fresh, and local is Aramark's signature focus. Upon arrival guests will discover a state-of- the-art food court featuring seven menu concepts. A wide variety of menu offerings include, Comfort Corner, featuring hearty selections such as made daily signature soup, vegetarian chili, mac-n-cheese, chicken pot pie or Colorado grass fed meat loaf, Pikes Peak Melt with signature sandwiches using locally sourced artisan breads, including gluten-free options. The Pikes Peak Grill will offer America's classic cheeseburger, seasoned fries, and assorted toppings. The Frozen Yogurt and Coffee Corner will showcase local ingredients and highlight Aramark's local food and beverage partnerships. For visitors on the go, prepared fresh salads, sandwiches, gourmet coffee and assorted local beverages will be available for grab-n-go. Plan to explore? Create your own Trail Mix at the Let's Go Hiking area, select from assorted nuts, dried fruit, granola & sweets to enjoy on your hike.
Enhanced signage, electronic menu boards, wayfinding information, and friendly team members will assist visitors through the Cafe to ensure time for enjoying the food and waiting vistas. Enjoy the one of a kind famous Pikes Peak Signature Donut! Choose the signature flavor, already bagged and ready to go, or have your donut customized. Choose cinnamon, nutmeg, or cocoa and watch as your donut is flavored and then packaged in a pretty bag to be enjoyed while on the summit or on the ride home.
The new visitor center at the Pikes Peak Summit will be a Top of the World experience -- an entirely re-imagined retail experience with a focus on education, sustainability, diversity and fun along with several new local artisans and suppliers.
The new Summit Visitor Center retail experience will have an expanded assortment of merchandise to meet the desires of every visitor. Aramark will offer promotional and value items and an entirely new assortment of premium, sustainable, and locally made products from suppliers within 250 miles, such as from EMI, Art Studio and Locale Outdoor. Products for purchase will be available from diverse suppliers including these woman-owned businesses: Corporate Gift Service (Uniforms and Souvenir), Doodle Pants (Children's Clothing), and McGovern Maps (Facial Coverings and Textiles). The store will be set up by themes with identifiable areas devoted to Pikes Peak Logoed Collectibles, Native American Handicrafts and Jewelry, Educational, and gift items. Retail gifts will focus on Geologic, Cultural, and Historical elements, events, icons, indigenous peoples, and founders and explorers. A special area in the store will have an educational twist to inspire future explorers.
In partnership with Denver-based Kastelfel (an industry leader in sustainable and water-based printing), Aramark will create a Water Refill area in the Summit Store with with a Custom Pikes Peak Sustainable Apparel, Souvenirs and a Just-For-Fun product assortment made of recycled and upcycled materials
The entire wall and fixtures will be made from sustainable and reclaimed materials. In addition to the new Pikes Peak Summit Store, the Glen Cove Store will be re-imaged focusing exclusively on local items and history. The Crystal Reservoir Store
will be re-imagined with a focus on hiking, exploring and survival gear to help visitors be ready for their journey to the summit by car, bike, or foot.
Pikes Peak Marathon
August 23, 2020
Photo from 2019 Pikes Peak Marathon
The Pikes Peak Marathon will take place on Aug. 23 as originally scheduled. The Pikes Peak Ascent, scheduled for Aug. 22, was canceled in late May. In partnership with El Paso County Public Health, race organizers have developed a plan that will ensure the safety of runners and community members in accordance with Gov. Jared Polis' COVID-19 guidance.
"We are pleased to be able to continue this 66-year Pikes Peak region tradition in 2020 and feel confident the event will be safe and enjoyable for all participants and volunteers," said Ron Ilgen, president of Pikes Peak Marathon, Inc. The usual fanfare that surrounds the race will be muted this year, and many of the leadup and post-race events will be canceled or reduced due to limitations on gathering. Social distancing requirements will be enforced at the start and finish, and some aid stations may be eliminated. Runners will start in small waves, down from the usual 100-person waves. Masks or cloth face coverings will be required before and after the race and at packet pickup.
"Even with the required limitations and changes this year, I am confident the runners will still have the memorable running experience that the Pikes Peak Marathon is famous for," Ilgen said.
The changes were necessary to be in accordance with state and local guidelines. While it's sure to be different, it's better than breaking the streak of 65 consecutive years with a Pikes Peak Marathon.
"Very important, this race is the second-oldest continually running marathon," Ilgen said. "We want to keep that streak going."
Pikes Peak Marathon History
The Pikes Peak Marathon, founded in 1956, is the second-oldest continually held marathon in the United States, taking runners from Manitou Springs, Colorado, to the summit of Pikes Peak at 14,115 feet, and back down for a total of 26.2 grueling mountain miles. It and its sister race, the Pikes Peak Ascent, each climb about 7,800 vertical feet up the historic Barr Trail on the east face of the mountain. The Ascent, which climbs 13.3 miles to finish at the summit, used to be held on the same day as the Marathon but became its own event in the 1980s due to its popularity.
The Marathon was home to the first official women's marathon finish in the U.S. as Arlene Pieper crossed the finish line in 1959. Manitou Springs resident Matt Carpenter holds the men's speed records for both the Ascent (2:01) and the Marathon (3:16), both set during the Marathon in 1993. Colorado runner Kim Dobson holds the women's Ascent record (2:24), and Maude Mathys of Switzerland set a new women's Marathon record of 4:02 in 2019.
The races, some of the most well-known and competitive trail races in the world, draw more than 2,000 mountain runners and their families to the local area each August. Pikes Peak Marathon staff estimates the local economic impact of the weekend at about $3.5 million between lodging, dining, and shopping. The Pikes Peak Ascent has its field capped at 1,800 runners, who are divided into waves by qualifying time. The Pikes Peak Marathon has fewer runners at 800 and also starts in waves. The Pikes Peak Ascent and Marathon are the pinnacle events of the local Garden to Peak Series (formerly Triple Crown of Running), which also includes the Garden of the Gods 10-mile Run and the Barr Trail Mountain Race, both of which have been canceled for 2020. The Pikes Peak Marathon has also been part of the international Salomon Golden Trail World Series since 2018, bringing many of the world's top mountain runners to Pikes Peak. That series has been scaled down this year due to travel restrictions and health concerns.
Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb
Sunday, August 30
The Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (PPIHC), brought to you by Gran Turismo, also known as The Race to the Clouds, is an annual invitational automobile hill climb to the summit of Pikes Peak - America's Mountain in Colorado, USA. The 2020 race will take place Sunday, August 30, with the green flag dropping at 7:30 a.m. The Pikes Peak Highway will be closed for tourist traffic on race day. For more information, visit PPIHC.org. Due to COVID-19, the PPIHC cannot allow spectators on Race Day, Practice Days or at Tech Inspection. Fan Fest has also been cancelled for 2020.
Race to the Clouds
History of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb
Commissioned by Thomas Jefferson to explore the Great Plains, Lt. Zebulon Pike first saw Pikes Peak in 1806 from the eastern portion of today's Colorado in 1806. As he approached the magnificent peak, rising abruptly from the plains, Pike swore this mountain would never be conquered by man.
Zebulon Pike never scaled the mountain which bears his name. But today, Pikes Peak has been climbed by tourists from all over the world by car, motorcycle, bicycle, train, mule, horse, and on foot. Most visitors are overcome by its beauty, including Katherine Lee Bates, who was inspired by the view from the summit to compose the famous lyrics to America the Beautiful in 1893.
Pike could have imagined neither the vehicles nor the automobile race course which would conclude at the summit of his peak a little over a century after his first sighting. By 1900, a carriage road had been built. Spencer Penrose, one of Colorado Springs' city's major benefactors, realized the tourist potential of such a beautiful landmark and in 1915 he finished converting the narrow carriage road into the Pikes Peak Highway. In order to publicize his new road, and draw visitors to his Broadmoor Hotel, he devised a simple plan; run an automobile race to the summit of Pikes Peak. The Pikes Peak Auto Hill Climb was first held on August 10, 11, and 12, 1916 and Rea Lentz was crowned the winner with a time of 20:55.600.
Drivers, then and now, are challenged by the torturous road and the rapidly changing weather. Starting out in sunshine, the driver could travel through sleet, thunderstorms, wind, hail, fog, or blinding snow before finishing, earning this famous race the descriptive term "The Race to the Clouds."
Over the 100+year history of this event, auto racing legends have pitted themselves and their machines against the mountain. American racing families from across the country have championed the course - names like Unser, Mears, Pastrana, Zwart, Vahsholtz and hundreds of others. International competitors have also etched their mark on Pikes Peak including Nobuhiro "Monster" Tajima, Ari Vatanen, Walter Rohrl, Michele Mouton, Rod and Rhys Millen, Sebastien Loeb and most recently Romain Dumas who set a new course record in 2018 of 7:57.148.
The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is the second oldest motorsports race in America and a long-standing tradition in Colorado Springs and the Pikes Peak Region. The race is run on a 12.42 mile (and now fully-paved) course with 156 turns that begins at 9,390 feet and finishes at the 14,115-foot summit of America's Mountain.
PIKES PEAK PROJECT TEAM SAFETY
While construction is deemed a critical activity by the state, we are taking extra precautions to keep our Pikes Peak project team safe. Posters from the Center for Disease Center hang onsite to remind workers to stay home if they are sick, be diligent regarding handwashing, and practice social distancing. Practices for this site includes increased cleaning of site common areas and Personal Protective Equipment; staggered start times and mealtimes; and dispersed work groups of ten people or less. Project leadership continues to track and follow federal, state, and local healthcare guidance to help reduce the spread of coronavirus.
SUPPORT THE PIKES PEAK SUMMIT COMPLEX, JUST BY SHOPPING AT KING SOOPERS
King Soopers is committed to helping communities grow and prosper. Year after year, local schools, churches and other nonprofit organizations earn thousands of dollars through King Soopers Community Rewards. This year, King Soopers has selected the Pikes Peak Summit Complex to participate in this program.
Sign up here
to link your King Soopers loyalty card to the Pikes Peak ID (VN950). Every time you shop, King Soopers donates to the project at no cost to you. Once logged into your King Soopers or City Market account you can search for Pikes Peak Summit Complex Fund either by name or VN950 and then click Enroll. New users will need to create an account which requires minimal basic information, a valid email address and a loyalty card. Your King Soopers card can also be used at any Kroger Store nationwide. For step-by step directions, see these FAQs
At Aramark, environmental stewardship is always top of mind and that commitment has remained a top priority when working with the City of Colorado Springs and the Pikes Peak Summit Complex amazing architectural and design partners. The reimagined Summit Visitor Center is designed with a minimal impact footprint in mind, promoting the health and well-being of everyone that visits. All the food and retail offerings, as well as Aramark's operational best practices are developed to complement and enhance the infrastructure design, enhancing the positive impact overall.
The new menu design and resulting kitchen equipment were chosen with local economies, waste minimization, and water and energy minimization in mind. Likewise, retail products and partnerships focus on local artisans and innovative packaging minimization programs that work to reduce product packaging overall and eliminate non-recyclable packaging entirely.
All possible waste from landfill will be diverted through innovative recycling, upcycling and composting programs. All organic waste and to-go packaging will be composted in Colorado Springs. Nitrile gloves, chip bags, candy wrappers and energy bar wrappers will all be upcycled into various products and composite lumber by Aramark's partner, Terra-Cycle. Aramark has already made great inroads with this program, having upcycled thousands of pounds of plastic at National Parks - we cannot wait to see the same impact at Pikes Peak!
2020 LOOK AHEAD FROM GE JOHNSON
August construction updates:
- Stone masonry begins on south elevation
- Glass installed at plaza level lobby on east and west elevations
- Roof underlayment completed, metal roof install begins
- Plaza roof east and west soffits, foundation waterproofing, and main level concrete slabs will be completed
- Dining and retail duct work are 85% complete
- Foundation backfill is 60% complete
- West plaza wearing slab will be placed on insulated plaza roof
- South elevation punch windows will begin installation
- East boardwalk system being installed
- Summit marker structural slab and seat walls will be placed
- Permanent north parking lot to start construction
Pikes Peak or Bust Marathon
[August 7, 1959]
Pikes Peak or Bust Marathon - Off for a footrace to the summit of Pikes Peak and back, 24.6 miles and a rise of 7,547 feet in altitude, these 16 contestants left the foot of Barr's Trail in Manitou Springs at 7:30 a.m. Seven who had registered for the race failed to start. Arlene Grundmann of Colorado Springs, lone woman in the race, is second from the right, seen between two men in the front row. Beside her, wearing goggles, is Lin Dilks of New Castle, Pa., who is a 63-year-old great grandfather , a B&O railroad engineer, and a world-famous runner. Some of the racers started fast and some slow, saving strength for a spurt later. A big crowd was out to see the runners off and many returned after lunch to cheer for the winners. Photo appeared in the Colorado Springs Gazette, August 8, 1959, Page 1. Courtesy of the Pikes Peak Library District
LIVE CAMERA FEED
to check out what's going on atop America's Mountain right this minute. View a LIVE camera feed from contractor GE Johnson and keep up with the amazing construction progress of the new Pikes Peak Summit Complex!
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Elevators and entry area.