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Wednesday, December 09, 2009
Area Ski Resorts Prepare To Open This Week
With an increase in expected snowfall over the next few days, skiers, snowboarders and winter enthusiasts can finally prepare to hit the slopes this week.
On Tuesday, both Holiday Valley and Peek'n Peak announced that the 2009-2010 ski season will start Thursday.
In Ellicottville, Holiday Valley is gearing up for a solid season of snow-filled fun and officials at the resort are excited about the coming months.
''Conditions have been excellent for snowmaking since last Friday and we've been making snow 24 hours per day since then,'' said Dennis Eshbaugh, general manager of Holiday Valley. ''The weather from Thursday forward will give us a good taste of winter with lows at night in the teens and snow squalls, just the way we like it.''
On Thursday, Holiday Valley will sell eight-hour (weekday) lift tickets for $47 for adults and $37 for juniors and senior citizens while night tickets are $30 for adults and $22 for juniors. Snowmaking will continue as weather permits with the goal of all 56 slopes and 13 lifts open on or before Christmas.
The Suburban Blend Snowboarding Shops in Ellicottville and Jamestown are also officially open for the season with loads of new equipment and gear for the upcoming season.
Suburban Blend is offering board tuning at the 17 E. Third St. location in downtown Jamestown, as well as its new store in the basement of the Ellicottville Depot, located at 6094 Route 219.
For more information, call the Ellicottville store at 708-1869 or the Jamestown store at 664-3023 or visit www.shoptheblend.com.
In Findley Lake, Peek'n Peak Resort and Spa is also prepared to welcome visitors Thursday as the main Ski Lodge, nine slopes and two lifts will be open from 9:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. with a packed powder base.
New for the 2009-2010 season, Peek'n Peak is offering a ''snow guarantee'' to ensure that visitors and guests are pleased with their experience, regardless of the weather. The resort is guaranteeing that the slopes will be open for a minimum of 100 days over the season and if the trails aren't 100 percent open, The Peak will discount the price of a daily lift ticket based on the percentage of open terrain.
With recent snowmaking technology upgrades at the resort, employees will make sure guests are skiing and riding on a minimum of a six-inch groomed base.
On Thursday, Peek'n Peak will sell eight-hour (weekday) lift tickets for $47 for adults and $37 for juniors while night tickets are $30 for adults and $22 for juniors and seniors.
Cockaigne Ski Area hasn't made an official announcement of when they will be opening the slopes, but Linda Johnson, Cockaigne public relations official, said if the weather is right this weekend skiing will be done on the hills in Cherry Creek.
''We've been getting ready, We've been making snow,'' she said. ''The ground is firm and frozen, the way we like it before we open.''
Ms. Johnson said one Cockaigne event they will be hosting this winter is their Christmas Race Camp on Dec. 26. She said many people that visit the ski facility are into ski racing, with race instruction to be given to anyone who applies.
Ms. Johnson said the lack of snowfall at the beginning of the winter season hasn't hurt Cockaigne so far.
''I've been here for a long time. Sometimes we open in November and some years it doesn't snow until Christmas,'' she said. ''You never know what weather we're going to get. You take what you get and make the most of it.''
Normal hours for Cockaigne are 4 to 10 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, 1 to 10 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. non-holiday Sundays, 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. holiday Sundays and open holiday weekend Mondays.
Weekday lift tickets cost $24 for adults and $18 for children 12-and-under.
Ms. Johnson said to call 287-3223 or visit www.cockaigne.com for the latest snow information.