Written by Lyle Ahrens, Posted: Wed, February 1 2012 at 3:58 PM, Updated: Wed, February 1 2012 at 4:17 PM
A new partnership will help to promote the Running 'Y' Resort to an international audience. The benefits could extend beyond the Running 'Y' Resort, and General Manager David Ellis is excited.
"Well, today is day one. We are officially number 17 in the Holiday Inn Resort Family. Having access to 61 million of their priority club members is a tremendous thing, not just for the resort, but for the surrounding community, and for Klamath Falls in general."
Jim Chadderdon of 'Discover Klamath' agrees.
"This is a very important move by the Running 'Y' to put themselves on a national, international stage."
The lodge has undergone a 3 million dollar renovation since it was sold by Jeld-Wen in November of 2010. And if the marketing agreement with Holiday Inn Resorts pays off, Chadderdon believes visitors will also be spending money outside of the Running 'Y'.
"They're going to be experiencing Crater Lake National Park, Lava Beds National Monument, they'll have an opportunity to be in Klamath Falls, and see some of the rural areas."
David Ellis stressed theat the Running 'Y' won't be losing any of its character.
"It's a 'soft' branding affiliation. It was very important to us to keep the Running 'Y' identity."
Over 100 people are employed at the Running 'Y' Resort during the height of tourist season.
Eagle Crest Resort near Bend is also part of the new partnership.
Negotiations between Running 'Y' and Eagle Crest parent company Northview Hotel Group and Holiday Inn Resorts began about ten months ago.
KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970's. He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.
Lyle's job history is quite colorful. He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand. A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90's as a news writer and commercial producer. In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.
Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience. "The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain. Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story".
When he's not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.