The Mountain Times

°F Sun, April 20, 2014

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Remembering Marie Hubbard

Former Killington resident Marie Hubbard passed away on April 20 at age 90 after a short illness. She was one of the first business entrepreneurs to believe in the fledgling Killington Ski Area and set her sights on operating a ski lodge there.

"Oh, we had good times. Those were good times, weren't they?" Those words came up often when Marie reminisced about the 21 years she and her husband Bud operated the Alpenhof Lodge in Killington.

They had both been skiers at Pico and married in 1946. After skiing at Killington and meeting founders Pres and Sue Smith, Marie "just knew Killington would be a great success," she said in a 2012 interview.

When several banks turned them down, Marie never gave up and was so "determined to have our ski lodge" that finally one banker changed his mind. The Alpenhof, built on land purchased from Oren Bates, became the town's first new ski lodge.

The seven Hubbard children, ages 3 to 17 when the Alpenhof opened Christmas Week 1959, soon helped with meals and cleaning rooms. "That's why we were a success," Marie said of the family effort to host guests winters and summers.

While the work could be demanding, the fun part was "meeting people from all over.  Many guests came year after year and became good friends," Marie related. Guests included Joan Baez, one of President Nixon's secretaries, doctors from the Cleveland Clinic and a psychiatrist who enjoyed visiting with them in the kitchen.

Daughter Mary Lou recalls that her parents threw big parties in the spring and fall for friends and family. "They loved to entertain; she didn't mind the work - she loved to cook for people," Mary Lou said of her mom's "awesome" home cooking.

Appreciative of their good fortune to have had "a successful business and so many good times," they sold the Alpenhof in 1980 (now the Highline Lodge) and retired to Florida. Bud passed away in 2003, and Marie returned to her hometown of Rutland in 2010.

Marie was also predeceased by son Robert, a grandson, three brothers and two sisters. She is survived by sons Gary P. Hubbard of Killington and Richard G. Hubbard and Frederick W. Hubbard both of Hubbardton; daughters Diane M. Ragosta and Robbin H. Gifford of Rutland, and Mary Lou Hubbard of Hubbardton; two sisters Helen R. Trapeni and Ruth Ann Pike of Rutland; and 11 grandchildren, seven great grandchildren, two great-great grandchildren, and nieces and nephews.

Calling hours are Wednesday April 24 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Clifford Funeral Home. A funeral mass will be celebrated at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in Rutland on Thursday, April 25 at 10 a.m. with a reception following in St. Anne's Hall.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Vermont Heart Association, care of Clifford Funeral Home, 2 Washington St., Rutland, Vt. 05701.