The nearly ninety-year-old name has been deemed insensitive.
Tuesday, June 28, 2022, NewEnglandSkiIndustry.com
Suicide Six will soon have a new name.
According to a statement issued by the resort today, "Our resort team embraces the increasing awareness surrounding mental health and shares the growing concerns about the insensitive nature of the historical name. The feelings that the word 'suicide' evokes can have a significant impact on many in our community."
The rope tow area was founded in 1936 by Rhode Island native and Dartmouth College alumnus Wallace "Bunny" Bertram, who reportedly chose the alliterative name based upon the name of the hill and the perceived fate of someone skiing straight down the face.
The earliest known reference to Suicide Six is the October 22, 1936 Woodstock, Vermont Standard, in which 'Uncle Matt' asked, "Have you taken a squint at 'Suicide Six,' new ski tow run on South Pomfret side of Woodstock Ski Tow property? t's steeper'n a cow's tail and efforts thrills enuf to make even a veteran skier's scalp tingle." [sic]
Laurance Rockefeller acquired the ski area in 1961, eventually also purchasing nearby Mt. Tom ski area and the Woodstock Inn and placing them under the RockResorts banner. An attempt was made at renaming the area in the mid 70s to "Woodstock's Tom and Six," however the Suicide Six name was restored. Mt. Tom was shut down in the late 1970s and alpine ski operations were consolidated at an improved Suicide Six.
Suicide Six and the Woodstock Inn were spun off from RockResorts in the 1980s and moved to the Woodstock Resort Corporation. Suicide Six received a new fixed grip quad chairlift in 2016.
According to the resort, "After much thought and consideration, research and community outreach, a new name has been developed and will be announced in the coming weeks."
Big Squaw in Maine is also slated for a name change with plans to be reborn as Moosehead Resort.