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YCQM - Tasha Wallis - Dec. 11, 2011 - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

YCQM - Tasha Wallis - Dec. 11, 2011

December 11, 2011 -- Tasha Wallis of the Vermont Retail Association joins Kristin Carlson and Darren Perron to discuss retail sales in Vermont.

>> GOOD MORNING. I'M KRISTIN CARLSON.

>> AND I'M DARREN PERRON. GOOD MORNING TASHA.

>> GOOD MORNING.

>> HERE WE ARE, 13 SHOPPING DAYS LEFT BEFORE CHRISTMAS. HOW IS THE SEASON SHAPING UP SO FAR?

>> SO FAR THE SEASON IS SHAPING UP GREAT! BLACK FRIDAY WAS HUGE. IT WAS HUGE ACROSS THE COUNTRY, AND IT WAS GREAT HERE IN VERMONT. UNIVERSITY MALL HAD THE MOST SHOPPERS EVER THAT DAY, I THINK BECAUSE OF THE MIDNIGHT OPENINGS, BUT I'VE TALKED TO MANY SMALL BUSINESSES AROUND THE STATE AND SO MANY DOWNTOWN FOLKS, AND THINGS ARE LOOKING GOOD.

>> GO AHEAD.

>> I WAS JUST THINKING ABOUT THE TIME AND THE DEADLINE IS SORT OF GETTING THERE, DECEMBER 11TH. HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE DOING LAST-MINUTE SHOPPING, HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE SHOPPING EARLIER?

>> OVERALL 30% OF PEOPLE SAY THEY'RE DONE ALREADY. I KNOW! [ LAUGHTER ]

>> I'M IN THE MIDDLE. I'M IN THE MIDDLE.

>> RIGHT. BUT THAT IS QUITE A BIT HIGHER THAN PREVIOUS YEARS, WHERE IT WAS ABOUT 20 SOME ODD PERCENT. IT'S A VERY COMPETITIVE SEASON, LOTS OF DEALS OUT THERE, CONSUMERS AND RETAILERS HAVE REALLY CHANGED SINCE THE ECONOMY TOOK A BIG DOWNTURN FOUR YEARS AGO.

>> WHAT ARE RETAILERS DOING TO GET SHOPPERS IN TO BUY THEIR GOODS?

>> WELL, WE CERTAINLY SEE DISCOUNTING, AND WE SEE DISCOUNTING EARLIER AND LONGER THAN WE HAVE IN THE PAST. AND IT WASN'T JUST THE LARGE STORES OR THE MALLS ON BLACK FRIDAY. A LOT OF SMALL COMPANIES GOT BUSINESS.

>> WE HAD SOME VIDEO FROM FLANNEL FRIDAY, AND THERE WERE LOTS OF PEOPLE OUT AND ABOUT.

>> YES. AND RETAILERS HAD BEEN PUSHING BLACK FRIDAY, SMALL-BUSINESS SATURDAY. WITH SMARTPHONES, IT'S NOT LIKE THE COMPUTER IN YOUR OFFICE. YOU CAN JUST PUSH AWAY FROM THE THANKSGIVING TABLE AND START SHOPPING. THEY HAVE TO COMPETE WITH THAT, THAT IMMEDIATE KIND OF, YOU KNOW, ABILITY TO LOOK ON-LINE, TO COMPARE PRICES ON-LINE, VERSUS PEOPLE WALKING TO THE STORES.

>> AND PEOPLE ARE DOING THAT RIGHT IN THE STORE, TOO. I MEAN, YOU CAN PRICE-COMPARE. WHAT OTHER THINGS -- AND WHAT ARE THESE APPS? IT'S A WHOLE NEW WAY TO SHOP.

>> THERE ARE A LOT OF DIFFERENT ONES. THERE ARE APPS WHERE YOU CAN WALK IN AND SCAN THE BAR CODE, AND THAT ALLOWS YOU TO PRICE-COMPARE NOT JUST WITH PRICES ON-LINE BUT PRICES IN THE IMMEDIATE AREA. THAT KEEPS PRICES LOW AND COMPETITIVE. BUT THERE ARE ALSO APPS THAT IF YOU SIGN UP FOR THEM AND WALK INTO A STORE, YOU GET AN IMMEDIATE NOTIFICATION JUST FOR YOU BECAUSE YOU HAVE SIGNED UP.

>> WHAT DOES THAT MEAN FOR LOCAL BUSINESSES WHEN YOU HAVE THIS SORT OF HYPERCOMPETITIVENESS WHERE EVERYTHING IS KIND OF INSTANCE?

>> IT MEANS THAT THEY HAVE TO WORK HARDER, AND WE'VE SEEN THAT. STORES THAT HAVE A UNIQUE NICHE, IT'S EASIER FOR THEM BECAUSE THEY HAVE SPECIFIC PRODUCTS UNLIKE OTHER PLACES, BUT IF YOU'RE AN OUTDOOR STORE AND YOU SELL THE SAME JACKET THAT'S AVAILABLE ON-LINE AROUND THE CORNER, EVERYWHERE ELSE, YOU REALLY HAVE TO WORK HARD TO REACH CUSTOMERS AND CONNECT WITH YOUR CUSTOMERS.

>> ARE CUSTOMERS WILLING TO PAY MORE IF IT'S A LOCAL STORE, OR BECAUSE OF THE ECONOMY AND WHERE WE'RE AT, IS PRICE KING AT THIS POINT?

>> THE ANSWER IS BOTH, AND IT REALLY DEPENDS ON WHAT THE PRICE DIFFERENTIAL IS. BUT MANY LOCAL RETAILERS WORK VERY HARD TO DEVELOP A RAPPORT WITH THEIR CUSTOMERS, AND HAVE LONG-TERM RELATIONSHIPS WITH THOSE CUSTOMERS, AND THAT REALLY MAKES A DIFFERENCE.

>> WHAT ARE WE SEEING ON PEOPLE'S WISH LISTS THIS YEAR? IS THERE A PARTICULAR ITEM THAT'S SORT OF THE HOT SELLER, IF YOU WILL?

>> YOU KNOW, ELECTRONICS ARE BIG, AND ELECTRONICS HAVE BEEN VERY POPULAR FOR A NUMBER OF YEARS, AND THERE'S DIFFERENT KINDS. THERE'S BIG ELECTRONICS. YOU KNOW, WE THOUGHT MAYBE THE MARKET FOR HDTVs WAS SATURATED, SO NOW THEY'RE BIGGER. THESE ARE GINORMOUS. AND THE SMARTPHONES, THE APPLE PRODUCTS -- THERE ARE SO MANY THINGS OUT THERE THAT PEOPLE ARE ASKING FOR.

>> IT SOUNDS LIKE ELECTRONICS STORES ARE THE BIG WINNERS. ARE THERE ANY BIG LOSERS? AS KRISTIN SAID, PEOPLE ARE WATCHING THEIR BUDGETS. ANY LOSERS IN THIS?

>> WELL, INTERESTINGLY ENOUGH, WE DO EXPECT GROWTH, WE PREDICTED 2.8% GOING INTO THIS SEASON, AND BLACK FRIDAY, SMALL-BUSINESS SATURDAY, ALL THOSE DAYS WERE BIGGER THAN PEOPLE EXPECTED. THE PEOPLE WHO ARE LOSING ARE THOSE WHO DIDN'T RESPOND TO THE DOWNTURN BY MANAGING THEIR INVENTORY BETTER AND DOING THE THINGS THEY NEEDED TO STAY COMPETITIVE. THERE IS ONE CATEGORY OF SELLER WHO DOESN'T DO WELL DURING THE HOLIDAY SEASON, AND THAT'S THE PEOPLE WHO SELL APPLIANCES, BECAUSE IT'S NOT OFTEN THAT SOMEONE ASKS FOR A WASHER/DRIER OR DISHWASHER FOR THE HOLIDAYS.

>> WAS THIS 2.3% SURPRISING?

>> IT'S SURPRISING GIVEN THE HARD YEAR WE'VE HAD, BUT CONSUMERS HAVE BEEN INCREDIBLY RESILIENT IN THIS ECONOMY. AND NOT JUST THAT. WE'RE SEEING THAT CONSUMERS ARE SPENDING MONEY THEY HAVE. THEY'VE SAVED UP, THEY'RE USING THEIR DEBIT CARD OR CASH. THEY'RE NOT USING CREDIT CARDS TO THE EXTENT THEY WERE BEFORE THE DOWNTURN.

>> YOU HAVE MEMBERS ACROSS THE STATE, AND SOMETIMES WHAT'S HAPPENING IN -- WHAT ARE YOU NOTICING OR HEARING FROM MEMBERS ACROSS THE STATE ABOUT SHOPPING AND THE NUMBERS SO FAR?

>> WELL, IT'S INTERESTING. I'VE HEARD THAT THINGS ARE GOOD IN NEWPORT, MIDDLEBURY, MANCHESTER, RUTLAND, SO FOR THOSE PEOPLE I'VE CHECKED IN WITH, THINGS HAVE BEEN GOOD SO FAR. I THINK THE CHALLENGE IS THAT WE'RE NOT THERE YET, AND CONSUMERS, YOU KNOW, COULD PULL BACK IF THERE ARE SURPRISING OR UNPLEASANT ECONOMIC NEWS, BUT I THINK WE'RE DRIVING TOWARD A GOOD, STRONG CHRISTMAS SEASON.

>> HOW DOES THE NATIONAL ECONOMIC OUTLOOK AND REALLY GLOBAL ECONOMIC OUTLOOK PLAY INTO SHOPPING HERE IN STRT HAVE THE -- VERMONT? DOES IT HAVE AN IMPACT?

>> IT DOES HAVE SOME IMPACT, BUT IF YOU WATCH THE NEWS EVERY DAY, WE'VE GOTTEN USED TO ALL THAT NEWS, AND WE WANT TO GET ON WITH OUR LIVES, AND WE WANT TO CELEBRATE WITH OUR FAMILIES. SO PEOPLE HAVE, I THINK, GOTTEN USED TO MORE CHALLENGING ECONOMIC TIMES, AND THEY'VE PLANNED AHEAD FOR THIS HOLIDAY SEASON.

>> I WANT TO SWITCH GEARS. WE'RE CLOSE TO THE START OF THE LEGISLATIVE SESSION. IS THERE ANYTHING PARTICULARLY THAT YOUR MEMBERS ARE GOING TO BE PUSHING OR LOBBYING FOR THIS YEAR?

>> YOU KNOW, OUR MEMBERS ARE VERY SUPPORTIVE OF THE SALES-TAX HOLIDAY. MANY OF THEM HAVE HAD OUTSTANDING EXPERIENCES WHEN WE'VE HAD THOSE SALES-TAX HOLIDAYS. I KNOW THAT'S VERY DIFFICULT AT A TIME WHEN THE STATE IS LOOKING FOR ADDITIONAL REVENUE, BUT IT'S SOMETHING THAT WORKS FOR CONSUMERS, WORKS FOR RETAILERS, AND, REALLY, IT'S A FUN EVENT AROUND THE STATE, YOU KNOW. AND THE FIRST TIME WE HAD IT, IT WAS VERY MUCH A LARGE-STORE EVENT. BUT BY THE TIME WE HAD THE LAST ONE, THERE WAS TREMENDOUS ACTIVITY IN ALL THE LOCAL VILLAGES, THE NEWSPAPERS HAD PROMOTIONS, AND WE WERE PLEASED.

>> OPPONENTS WILL SAY THESE ARE PEOPLE WHO ARE JUST HOLDING OFF ON PURCHASES THEY WOULD HAVE MADE ANYWAY, AND IT'S INTERESTING BECAUSE I'M SURE STORES POSTED PRICES THAT WAS EQUAL TO THE DIFFERENCE, BUT WHAT DO YOU SAY TO THOSE PEOPLE?

>> I DON'T THINK THEY WOULD HAVE SPENT THEIR MONEY ANYWAY. I'VE TALKED TO A LOT OF RETAILERS ABOUT THIS, AND SOME OF THEM ARE SURPRISED, THEY SAY 40% OFF, I DON'T SEE THE TRAFFIC WITH 6% OFF.

>> A 6% SALE --

>> THAT WOULDN'T GENERATE A WHOLE LOT OF ANYTHING. BUT PEOPLE DO APPRECIATE A BREAK FROM THE GOVERNMENT, THEY REALLY DO. IT BRINGS THEM OUT IN FORCE, AND I THINK IT REALLY MAKES A DIFFERENCE, AND THERE'S AN INTERESTING STUDY THAT FLORIDA DID AFTER THEIR SALES-TAX HOLIDAY, AND THEY FOUND IT BECOMES NOT JUST A SALE BUT AN EVENT, PEOPLE TALK ABOUT IT AT WORK YOU CAN TALK TO INDIVIDUALS ABOUT WHAT THEY BOUGHT ON THAT DAY.

>> WHAT DO YOU THINK THE CHANCES ARE OF THAT PASSING, EVEN WITH EVERYTHING THAT'S ON THE PLATE?

>> WELL, I THINK WE HAVE A GREATER CHANCE OF HAVING A WONDERFUL HOLIDAY SEASON, BUT WE'RE VERY HOPEFUL. I THINK IT'S SOMETHING THAT EVEN IF WE DON'T GET IT THIS YEAR, IT'S SOMETHING TO KEEP ON THE FRONT BURNER AND IN PEOPLE'S MINDS MOVING FORWARD.

>> WE WERE TALKING ABOUT SOME OF US LATE SHOPPERS, LAST-MINUTE SHOPPERS -- ALL RIGHT, ME. I'LL OWN IT, FOR SURE. I'M ONE OF THOSE GUYS. LAST MINUTE, SOMETIMES EVEN THE NIGHT BEFORE. ARE THERE SOME DEALS OUT THERE THAT I SHOULD BE KEEPING MY EYE ON? WHAT ARE THE BIGGEST DEALS THIS HOLIDAY SEASON, AS I HIT THE MALLS AND DIFFERENT SHOPS?

>> DARREN, YOU'RE WHAT WE CALL "A PANIC BUYER." GENERALLY IT'S MEN WHO WAIT UNTIL THE LAST MINUTE, AND YOU SEE THEM OUT SHOPPING, GENERALLY YOU END UP SPENDING MORE THAN OTHER SHOPPERS, BECAUSE YOU'RE CLOSE TO THE DEADLINE.

>> YOU CAN'T SHOP AROUND TO DIFFERENT STORES, YOU JUST HAVE TO BUY IT WHEN YOU SEE IT.

>> IN AND OUT.

>> THIS IS THE IDEAL SHOPPER, RIGHT?

>> NO. EVERY SHOPPER IS VALUABLE, EVERY CONSUMER IS VALUABLE TO US.

>> WAITING UNTIL THE LAST MINUTE, THOUGH, WHAT SHOULD I BE LOOKING FOR? ANY ADVICE?

>> IT DEPENDS ON WHAT KINDS OF THINGS YOU'RE LOOKING FOR. ONE OF THE THINGS THAT YOU SHOULD BE CONCERNED ABOUT IS THAT, GIVEN THE ECONOMIC SITUATION, RETAILERS HAVE PULLED BACK ON INVENTORY. AFTER CHRISTMAS IN 2008, STORES WERE LEFT WITH AN INCREDIBLE AMOUNT OF STUFF THAT THEY DIDN'T SELL, AND THEY HAD TO SELL AT FANTASTIC DISCOUNTS, SO THEY PRETTY MUCH TRIED TO BRING IN JUST WHAT THEY THINK THEY CAN SELL. SO YOU MIGHT FIND YOURSELF NOT ABLE TO FIND PRODUCT X THAT YOU'VE LEFT TO THE LAST MINUTE. OTHER THAN THAT, DEALS WILL REALLY DEPEND ON HOW THINGS GO IN THE COMING WEEKS F. CONSUMERS START TO PEEL BACK AND NOT SPEND AS MUCH, YOU'LL SEE MORE DISCOUNTING AS WE APPROACH CHRISTMAS.

>> ANOTHER SORT OF POPULAR THING THAT WE'VE BEEN SEEING -- AND THIS IS REALLY IN THE LAST COUPLE OF YEARS -- IS LAYAWAY.

>> MAYBE YOU CAN EXPLAIN HOW THIS WORKS. IS THIS BENEFICIAL TO RETAILERS, DOES THIS BENEFIT THE CONSUMER?

>> LAYAWAY WAS REALLY IN RESPONSE TO THE ECONOMIC DOWNTURN, AND THE ISSUE OF PEOPLE SPENDING ON CREDIT. IT GIVES PEOPLE ANOTHER WAY TO MAKE THEIR PURCHASE OVER TIME. IT CAN WORK FOR THE RETAILER AND THE CONSUMER, BUT CONSUMERS SHOULD REALLY PAY ATTENTION IF THEY SIGN UP FOR LAYAWAY, TO LOOK AT THE FEES AND CALCULATE THE FEES AND MAKE SURE THAT IT'S SOMETHING THAT WORKS FOR THEM. LIKE CREDIT CARDS OR ANY OTHER FORM OF PAYMENT, THERE ARE FEES, AND THOSE CAN VARY FROM STORE TO STORE.

>> ANY PROMOTIONS --

>> I THINK DARREN IS LOOKING FOR A DEAL!

>> I'VE GOT MY LIST!

>> MY SUGGESTION FOR YOU, DARREN, IF YOU'RE LOOKING FOR A DEAL, START SHOPPING TOMORROW, DON'T WAIT. IT'S ALSO INTERESTING, WE'RE LOOKING AT -- USUALLY THE SATURDAY BEFORE CHRISTMAS IS THE BIGGEST DAY OF THE YEAR.

>> SO NOT BLACK FRIDAY BUT THE SATURDAY BEFORE CHRISTMAS.

>> RIGHT, BUT WE'VE GOT A WHOLE WEEK ON THAT DAY UNTIL CHRISTMAS, SO WE'RE HOPING THAT PEOPLE WERE TURN OUT ON THAT SATURDAY AND THEN CONTINUE TO TURN OUT AND SHOP.

>> IS IT A TOUGH BALANCE FOR RETAILERS BECAUSE THEY WANT TO ATTRACT CUSTOMERS BUT DON'T WANT TO SLASH PRICES TOO EARLY?

>> YES. IT'S A VERY DELICATE BALANCE. THE CHALLENGE IS THAT CONSUMERS HAVE COME TO EXPECT THAT DEAL. DARREN WANTS HIS DEAL, HE EXPECTS THAT DEAL. CONSUMERS EXPECT A SPECIAL DEAL. THEY DON'T EXPECT TO PAY FULL PRICE. THEY CAN LOOK AROUND, THEY COMPARISON SHOP WITH THEIR MOBILE APPS, THEY GET FLYERS IN THE MAIL EVERY DAY. SO THAT'S ONE OF THE NICE THING ABOUT SOME OF OUR VERMONT PRODUCTS, THEY ARE UNIQUE AND DIFFERENT, THEY'RE NOT SPECIALTY -- SPECIALTY FOOD PRODUCTS ARE DOING VERY WELL.

>> THE VERMONT RETAILERS ASSOCIATION, THANK YOU, TASHA, FOR TALKING SHOPPING AND HELPING DARREN OUT.

>> THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR HAVING ME.

>> NEXT, IN NEIGHBORS IN THE NEWS, WE'RE GOING TO HAVE A Joe Carroll profiles spunky elders for us a

>> JOE CAROL PROFILES OUR SEEKER SENIORS.

>> TODAY JOE INTRODUCES US TO EMMA BURKE OF WALLINGFORD.

>> HELLO!

>> Reporter: TO SAY SHE IS AN AFFECTIONATE WOMAN MIGHT BE AN UNDERSTATEMENT. SHE TREATS EVERYBODY AT EMMA'S PLACE LIKE THEY'RE FAMILY.

>> THANK YOU SO MUCH!

>> Reporter: BUT ONE PERSON IS. EMMA IS EMMA BURKE, THE FOUNDER AND DIRECTOR OF LENNY BURKE FARMS, FOR PEOPLE WITH HEAD TRAUMA. SHE EBB LENA -- LENNY IS THE REASON THE PLACE EXISTS.

>> HE ALMOST DIED.

>> Reporter: 33 YEARS AGO HE WAS GOING UP FOR A LAY-UP WHEN A PLAYER FROM THE OPPOSING TEAM PUSHED HIM FROM BEHIND. HITTING THE WALL AND THEN THE FLOOR, HEAD FIRST.

>> LENNY CHANGED FOREVER AT THAT MOMENT.

>> Reporter: LENNY WAS RUSHED TO THE HOSPITAL. HE WENT INTO A COMA. SOME OF THE DOCTORS THOUGHT HE WOULD DIE. THEN, 46 DAYS OF PHYSICAL UPS AND DOWNS, HE REGAINED CONSCIOUSNESS. TODAY LENNY IS VISITING THE SCHOOL WHERE IT ALL HAPPENED. MOUNT ST. JOSEPH ACADEMY IN RUTLAND.

>> HOW YOU FEELING?

>> I FEEL GREAT. I FEEL BETTER EVERY DAY.

>> Reporter: HE HASN'T ALWAYS BEEN SO UPBEAT ABOUT HIS INJURY OF THE AFTER HE WOKE UP, REALITY SET IN.

>> WHEN I WAS AT THE HOSPITAL IN CALIFORNIA, I WANTED TO DIE. I WAS DOWN THAT FAR.

>> Reporter: I WAS A SOPHOMORE AT MSJ AT THE TIME, A PRETTY AVERAGE STUDENT, AND TO THIS DAY I DON'T REMEMBER MUCH ABOUT SPANISH. BUT ONE THING I DO REMEMBER: LIFE IS FRAGILE, AND EVEN STAR BASKETBALL PLAYERS CAN ALMOST DIE.

>> I SAW WHAT WAS HAPPENING, AS IT WAS HAPPENING.

>> Reporter: IN THE AUDIENCE THAT NIGHT, HIS MOTHER EMMA. SHE SAW IT ALL. YOU WERE OPTIMISTIC HE WAS GOING TO GET THROUGH THIS?

>> ABSOLUTELY.

>> Reporter: EMMA'S LIFE WAS DRASTICALLY ALTERED, BUT SHE HASN'T HAD TIME FOR PITY. THE THEN 36-YEAR-OLD MOTHER OF FOUR HAD A CHILD WHO NEEDED SPECIAL CARE. SHE WANTED TO START A TREATMENT FACILITY FOR LEN COUNTRY THAT COULD BE CALLED HOME. SHE NEEDED A LICENSE AND NURSING DEGREE, AND SHE DID THIS AT AGE 42. SHE GOT AN AVERAGE 4.0. DO YOU EVER ASK WHY ME?

>> NO. LOTS OF PEOPLE HAVE HAD THE SAME THING.

>> Reporter: THERE ARE NOW 23 RESIDENTS AT MULTIPLE FACILITIES IN RUTLAND COUNTY.

>> I TOLD MY KIDS WHEN THAT WHEN I WAS 70, I WOULD RETIRE. NOW I'M NOW THINKING MAYBE 75.

>> Reporter: WHAT A WONDERFUL JOB.

>> SHE IS DOING THE PROPELLER ON MY AIRPLANE.

>>> A NEW ATTRACTION SET TO OPEN WILL LIKELY DRAW A NEW CROWD TO THE KINGDOM YEAR-ROUND. WE CHECK IT OUT.

>> Reporter: JAY PEAK IS HOME TO SOME OF THE BADDEST TERRAIN IN ALL THE EAST. AND NOT JUST ON THE SKI SLOPE. THE RESORT'S NEW $20 MILLION WATER PARK IS LIKE NO BLACK DIAMOND YOU'VE EVER EXPERIENCED.

>> AWESOME!

>> LIKE LIGHTING YOUR HAIR ON FIRE KIND OF EXCITEMENT.

>> Reporter: FROM START TO FINISH --

>> [ SHRIEKING ]

>> Reporter: THIS IS A SLIPPERY SLOPE THAT'S WORTH VENTURING ONTO. IF I'M AN ADRENALINE JUNKIE, WHAT DO I WANT TO HIT?

>> THE CHUTE.

>> Reporter: IT STARTS WITH A 60-FOOT FREEFALL.

>> DOING ABOUT 2.9 SECONDS.

>> Reporter: THERE IS ONLY ONE OTHER SLIDE LIKE IT IN THE WORLD.

>> YOU'RE DOING ABOUT 45 MILES AN HOUR.

>> Reporter: AND THAT ONE'S IN JAPAN.

>> THE FLOOR DROPS OUT FROM BENEATH YOU, TOTALLY UNEXPECTED, AND THAT CHUTE IS KIND OF A LONG DROP, AND YOU GET A BLAST OF COLD WATER AT THE END.

>> Reporter: AND AS MUCH AS I HATE TO ADMIT IT, THIS SLIDE HAD ME SCARED OUT OF MY MIND. I'M SHAKING! ONCE YOU STEP INSIDE THIS ROCKET SHIP, THERE'S NO TURNING BACK.

>> 3, 2, 1. [ COUGHING ]

>> Reporter: IF A 60-FOOT FREEFALL ISN'T YOUR THING --

>> THAT'S ONE OF THE CRAZIEST THINGS I'VE DONE.

>> Reporter: WHY NOT TRY RIDING SOME WAVES?

>> THIS IS JUST OVER THE TOP.

>> Reporter: FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER IN VERMONT, YOU CAN NOW SKI AND SURF, ALL IN THE SAME DAY.

>> UNIQUE FOR VERMONT.

>> THIS IS WHERE DREAMS ARE MADE, THE FLOW RIDER.

>> Reporter: THE BEAUTY OF SURFING INDOORS IS THAT ANYONE CAN LOOK GOOD ON A BOARD.

>> OKAY, YOU'RE STANDING, NOW BIG SMILE TO THE CROWD.

>> HI, MOM.

>> HI MOM, HI DAD, HI EVERYONE.

>> BEAUTIFUL WOMAN IN THE THIRD ROW.

>> Reporter: AND ONCE THE WATER'S TURNED ON, THE WAVES ARE CONTINUOUS, WHICH MEANS THAT SOONER OR LATEER --

>> AHH!

>> Reporter: IN MY CASE LATER --

>> NO HARM DONE, RIGHT?

>> Reporter: -- YOU WILL FINALLY GET THE HANG OF IT. FOR THE LESS ADVENTUROUS, THERE ARE SOME CALMER ALTERNATIVES. SOME WIND THEIR WAY OUTDOORS; OTHERS ARE PITCH BLACK.

>> YOU KNOW HOW, LIKE, WHEN YOU'RE IN A NIGHTMARE AND YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT'S NEXT? IT'S KIND OF LIKE THAT.

>> Reporter: AND THIS ONE EVEN FEELS A LITTLE LIKE AN OLYMPIC SPORT.

>> LIKE A LUGE RUN.

>> Reporter: IT'S A RESORT ROCKING AND ROLLING WITH THE TIMES.

>> 2, 1.

>> Reporter: NO MATTER THE WEATHER, NO MATTER THE SEASON, A NEW WAY TO PLAY AT JAY PEAK RESORT. AWESOME, RIGHT.

>> YEAH, I WOULD BE SCARED, THOUGH.

>> I WILL BE HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS. I'LL CHECK IT OUT WHEN I'M IN THE KINGDOM NEXT TIME.

>>> YOU MIGHT KNOW HIM FOR THE DOS EQUIS COMMERCIALS.

>> HE LIVES IN VERMONT. HE DOESN'T WANT US TO SAY EXACTLY WHERE, BUT WE CAUGHT UP WITH HIM AT HIS HOME TO SEE IF HE REALLY IS THE MOST INTERESTING MAN IN THE WORLD.

>> Reporter: YOU MIGHT NOT THINK IT AT FIRST GLANCE.

>> TOLD YOU IT WAS BIG.

>> Reporter: BUT THIS IS THE MOST INTERESTING MAN IN THE WORLD. YOU WEREN'T ALWAYS THE MOST INTERESTING MAN IN THE WORLD.

>> WELL, SOME EVEN WONDER IF I AM NOW.

>> YOU HE -- HE COULD DISARM YOU WITH HIS LOOKS.

>> Reporter: HE PLAYS THE MOST INTERESTING MAN IN THE WORLD IN THE DOSE EKICE -- THE DOS EQUIS COMMERCIALS.

>> I HEAR THE SOUND OF KNOCKING WOOD.

>> Reporter: SOME OF HIS TRAITS: HIS BLOOD SMELLS LIKE COLOGNE, SHARKS HAVE A WEEK DEDICATED TO HIM, AND POLICE PULL HIM OVER JUST TO LEARN ABOUT HIM. IF THIS HAS TAKEN ON A LIFE OF ITS OWN, BUT THE LINE IS OFTEN POPPING UP IN CONVERSATION.

>> HE ONCE HAD AN AWKWARD MOMENT JUST TO SEE HOW IT FEELS.

>> Reporter: SALES INCREASEED WHEN THE COMMERCIALS STARTED FIVE YEARS AGO. HE SAYS THE ADS MADE HIM A VERY WEALTHY MAN.

>> I'M REALLY AT THE POINT WHERE MOST PEOPLE IN THE DWI LIGHT OF THEIR CAREER, AND MINE IS -- TWILIGHT OF THEIR CAREER, AND MINE IS JUST STARTING.

>> Reporter: HE WAS ON DYNASTY AND DALLAS. THIS ROLE IS A REAL SURPRISE FOR THIS 73-YEAR-OLD FROM THE BRONX. SO WHAT IS THE MOST INTERESTING MAN IN THE WORLD DOING IN VERMONT?

>> I'VE ALWAYS HAD AN AFFINITY FOR VERMONT. MY FATHER HAD AN OLD FARMHOUSE IN CHATHAM, NEW YORK, AND THE TIME I WAS ABOUT 16 -- THAT'S WHEN HE BOUGHT IT -- WE WOULD COME UP ON WEEKENDS.

>> Reporter: HE NOW LIVES HERE WITH HIS WIFE BARBARA AND HIS DOG. YOU CLEARED ALL THIS.

>> YES.

>> Reporter: DO YOU GET BORED HERE?

>> NO, I NEVER GET BORED ANYPLACE.

>> Reporter: WHAT DO YOU DO IN YOUR SPARE TIME?

>> SEE THE LIBRARY?

>> Reporter: AND THE REAL JONATHAN GOLDSMITH IS REALLY INTERESTING.

>> I THINK IF YOU'RE INTERESTED, YOU BECOME INTERESTING.

>> Reporter: YOU HAVE GREAT HAIR!

>> WELL, THANK YOU.

>> Reporter: HE IS PASSIONATE ABOUT HELPING HANDICAPPED AND ABUSED CHILDREN, A MISSION FOR OVER 50 YEARS.

>> I'VE ALWAYS HAD A DEEP FEELING ABOUT CHILDREN AT RISK.

>> Reporter: HIS MOM WAS A MODEL. HE LOVES SAILING, READING, AND FLY FISHING WITH HIS DAD'S ROD, AN INTEREST HE TRIED TO PASS ON TO ME. DO YOU EVER WISH THE LIFE YOU DEPICT ON TELEVISION IS THE LIFE YOU COULD REALLY LEAD?

>> I DO! NO, OF COURSE, SURE! I'D LIKE TO BE THAT GUY, TOO!

>> Reporter: AND HE WILL GET TO KEEP PLAYING THAT GUY FOR AT LEAST TWO MORE YEARS. CAN YOU SAY THE LINE?

>> NO, CONTRACTUALLY, I CAN'T. PEOPLE ASK ME ALL THE TIME.

>> Reporter: NOW IT'S YOUR TURN. HERE ARE SOME QUESTIONS YOU POSTED ON FACEBOOK. WHERE IS THE MOST INTERESTING PLACE HE'S BEEN?

>> I WOULD SAY ANTIGUA.

>> Reporter: DO YOU WANT A BUDWEISER?

>> NEVER.

>> Reporter: CAN YOU BALANCE A CHECKBOOK? HE LIKES MARTINIS AND SCOTCH. GINA BULLARD, SOUTHERN VERMONT.

>> INTERESTING! NO DOUBT ABOUT IT. YOU KNOW, I THINK THE MORAL OF THIS STORY IS NOT ONLY DO WE GET TO MEET THIS GUY, BUT DON'T GO FLY FISHING WITH GINA.

>> THAT'S SCARY.

>>> THAT WILL DO IT FOR US. HAVE A GREAT SUNDAY, EVERYONE.

>> TAKE CARE. CAPTIONING PROVIDED BY CAPTION ASSOCIATES, LLC WWW.CAPTIONASSOCIATES.COM

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