Welcome to the Newschoolers forums! You may read the forums as a guest, however you must be a registered member to post. Register to become a member today!
I think a rail jam would be a great idea! Since it's a college town I bet you could get a lot of kids to come and generate some solid marketing for the resort.
I just judged a rail jam yesterday in Lakewood, CO, I can certainly give you some suggestions on how to do the event right.
First off, I recommend you have a registration fee, not a lot though, something small like 10 or 15 bucks. If you are going to do a rail jam right, its going to take a lot of time and time is money so make a bit of money! Next you need to make sure you have a legit waiver, something where no one can sue you for getting hurt etc. Then you have the features that you want kids to session...make sure both skiers and snowboarders will be able to hit it, the setup I was at last night was more setup for snowboarders, skiers were still throwing down but they were certainly limited. Try and get two or three features in the jam, an easy feature(flat box or flat rail) so that all levels of ability can participate and then some sort of urban down, maybe a feature with a kink(s). Once you have that down you need to decide how you are going to judge it, if you have multiple features then you may want to have everyone session one feature and then move on to the next feature and assign each rider a score of 1-10 for each feature based on how large their bag of tricks was and their overall style. The next big thing is making sure your seperate the riders into small heats! It sucks when you have a heat of 20+ kids and you have a huge line to wait through before you drop and the smaller the heats...the easier it is to judge the riders and make sure you get everyone. After you have the infrastucture laid out, the next step is making people want to come. You need sponsors there who are giving out product and donating gear to be given to the winners. You also may want to give out some cash to the top riders, even if its small amounts, like $25 or $50, it will motivate more people to come show up. The next important thing you need is a good announcer person who can hype the crowd up and be term savy with tricks riders are throwing, has to be someone who knows skiers and snowboarders well. I hate when you go to a rail jam and its been organized by only snowboarders and they don't know anything about skiing and pretzls and what not. Another important thing is to thank your sponsors of the event and get them publicity. Companies that show up need to get some marketing out of it, this is key, again time is money and they want something out of it as well. Yesterday the announcer for got to give a call out to my company and another company, that didn't go so well for the guys who organized it.
Hope this helps! Let me know if you have any questions.