The coronavirus has prompted people to take a different approach to life. And in wanting to celebrate and acknowledge life’s monumental moments, folks have had to get creative and, in many cases, have done so with great success.
When the 2020 senior class of Peak School high school in Summit County, CO was evaluating their options for holding graduation, the Head of School, Travis Aldrich, reached out to Copper Mountain GM Dustin Lyman with an idea for a chairlift commencement.
Not only did Dustin love the idea but because of its 6-person capacity the Super Bee was the perfect lift for social distancing and offered ideal views with the iconic Tenmile Range in the background.
“Whether or not we could pull it off was a whole ‘nother question,” says Dustin. “So we worked with Summit County Public Health to establish the protocols for the ceremony with loading and unloading. Our operations team did a great job of just figuring out the logistics, and we got lucky with the weather, and it was great for the community.”
On Friday, May 29, 2020, Copper Mountain gave the 14-student Peak School graduating class a commencement experience they will never forget. Using an old SL Dynastar racing ski, Travis attached a basket to the end of it and placed each student’s diploma in the basket. The students rode up the lift, along with members of their households, and as the chairs crested the top terminal of Super Bee, the graduates ceremoniously grabbed their diploma from out of the basket.
Smiling beneath their custom-made Peak School face masks — sewn by 2020 graduate Cameron Bryant’s grandmother — the grads then slowly descended 2,293 vertical feet, staring out at one of the most breathtaking views of Summit County.
Congratulations to the Peak School 2020 graduating class and 2020 graduates everywhere!

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Copper Mountain raises the bar for local high school graduation.
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