Natalie's Everyday Heroes: Alpine Valley lift operator Pat Cusick

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WISCONSIN (CBS 58) -- If you've spent the day skiing at Alpine Valley Resort, there's a good chance you've run into "Alpine Pat."

Pat Cusick is an outgoing lift operator at the resort, who has a positive word for everyone. He has a big personality that has also turned him into a star on YouTube.

"Alpine Valley! Fastest way to fun," Cusick called out to skiers, echoing the resort's motto.

Alpine Valley's motto is also a mantra of sorts for Cusick.

"If I'm in the valley, I'm happy," he said.

Cusick has been a lift operator here for more than 13 years. It's a job he picked up after he retired.

"I love the outdoors and actually my lovely daughter, Corrine, said, 'get a job at Alpine,'" Cusick remembered.

When he's working at the chair lift, he's always quick with a smile and an encouraging word.

"You guys are looking good on those boards. Shredding nasty," he yelled to a pair of snowboarders.

"It's weird to describe a guy as a ray of sunshine, but he's just a positive individual," said Jamison Stachel, Alpine Valley's general manager.

You can find Cusick at the bottom of the Valley Flyer highspeed lift.

His goal is to get as many skiers to the top as quickly as possible.

"I try to organize the line, that's another one of my pet peeves on a busy day. If I don't see four people on a chair, it bugs me! You know? Come on, lets fill up the chair," he said.

His hard work and good vibes earning him plenty of fans and friends.

"Good morning, how are you? And I know so many people, and I know their families. I address them by their first names," he said of how he greets guests.

He recognizes their gear and slope style.

"I can see somebody coming down up on top and I go, yep, that's Cindy. I just know the way she turns. Or that's John, that's the way he snowboards," he said.

He knows people's names, and they know him.

"People recognize me and just go, 'Alpine Pat!' It's like, 'hey, how's it going,'" he said with a laugh.

Alpine Pat. It's a moniker he earned not at the chair lift, but on YouTube.

"How I got that name, it was kind of years ago," he explained. "We did a video and he just kind of called me Alpine Pat after that video and it stuck."

His videos have been covering all aspects of life at Alpine Valley for years.

From the mogul field to the terrain park, and so much more.

"If we're building a new lift, or if we're cutting a new run, or we're adding something big, he'll show up from out of nowhere and say, 'give me a quick interview, Jamo,'" Stachel said.

Stachel has known Pat for years.

"I started as a lift operator with Alpine Pat," Stachel said.

Pat encouraged him to dream big from the beginning.

"Early on, he said, you're going to run this place someday. You know what, you've got what it takes," Stachel said. "He was there to support me all the way through."

And Pat's videos showcase the best of Alpine Valley.

"He interviews the staff, the skiers, the ski patrol, ski school. And he really gives an insight to all the intimacy of such a small resort," Stachel said.

Even Alpine Pat's own skills on a snowboard are on display. It's also something he picked at Alpine Valley.

"We received five inches of fresh on Saturday night," Alpine Pat said, snowboarding into one of his videos.

Stachel has seen Alpine Pat work his magic for years.

"You're having a bad day? Find Pat. He'll make you smile," Stachel said.

"A lot of times I'll give them a little, 'you're looking good, you look mid-season form,' you know, on opening day," Cusick said with a laugh.

So if you see Alpine Pat, say hi. He'll make you feel like family for years to come.

"I'm not going anywhere, you know? Maybe someday I might say I've had enough of Alpine, but it's not in the future. I don't see it. I just love coming here," Cusick said.

During the summer months, Cusick also works on the resort's golf course.

To check out some of Alpine Pat's videos, click here.

If you'd like to nominate an Everyday Hero, send Natalie a message at [email protected]

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