Co-op to Open in Breckenridge

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The Summit Daily is reporting that Silverthrone, Colorado will soon have their climbing gym back. Formally known as Chizzled Fitness, the gym will now be known as Summit Climbing Gym and will be operated as a co-op.

The gym has had two owners since it first opened in 2002 and has twice gone out of business.

“The expenses outweighed the revenue,” said original owner Mike Wolfson, discussing his reasons for giving up the business.

He closed the gym in 2005, and is now part of the effort to reopen, with a decidedly different business model.

The facility went unused until 2011, when it was reopened by the owners of Chizzled Fitness. Both Wolfson and Chizzled Fitness leased the space, which is now bank owned under foreclosure.

“We’re their last shot,” said Kent Sharp, one of the other seven climbers looking to reopen the gym.

The co-op model has been used successfully in other small towns that do not have the climber population to sustain a full for-profit climbing gym. Co-ops are run not by a single person trying to make a living off the business but by the customers themselves. Each membership rate is set so the gym will break even with all revenue going back into the facility to buy and maintain equipment.

As of Sept. 16th Summit Climbing Gym had reached their goal of 40 annual memberships which will allow them to finalize the lease and other details. The gym hopes to open on Nov. 1st.

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