We don't eat at the ski resort cafeterias very often and every time we do, it reminds us why we don't. They're crowded, there is never an open table, but there are a million non-skiing moms with packed lunches who have a table big enough for 8 people by themselves. If you ask, they're almost invariably saving the seats (and likely for a family that is out on the slopes, not in line). So you spend forever mindlessly walking around until you decide to eat standing or sitting against a wall.
- Get picnic tables and put them in long rows. This implicitly encourages sharing tables and any open range of seats is fair game. IIRC, Sugarloaf does this.
- Or take a lesson from golf: "singles have no rights". One person can't hold a table by themselves. Mom takes half the kids, then Dad takes the other half. Or *shudders* don't claim an open table until you actually have food.