MONTICELLO – Holiday Mountain Ski & Fun Park, after dealing with the uncontrollable weather conditions the last couple of weeks, was able to officially reopen on Saturday, January 13. New …
MONTICELLO – Holiday Mountain Ski & Fun Park, after dealing with the uncontrollable weather conditions the last couple of weeks, was able to officially reopen on Saturday, January 13. New owner Mike Taylor said that they only got five solid nights of snowmaking since December 20, forcing them to push back the opening of the ski hill several times.
“The temperatures have just been so marginal,” Taylor said. “The peak temperature for snowmaking that we look for is 27 degrees. We are working through the bugs, and we have had some electrical problems. It’s a process and a learning experience.”
Taylor also said they have new technology and staff that have been learning the ropes as they go. He also said that they have had some computer issues to work out. The weekend before Holiday opened, the new owner said that former owner Craig Passante came out to help the snowmaking staff and teach them the best strategies for getting snow down.
The ski hill opened with three trails operational out of the planned six trails. Taylor said that with the low temperatures this past week, they were able to work at blowing snow on the other trails to get them open soon.
The tubing run was not open for the opening weekend, but Taylor said that they got state approval and will open that this weekend. The tubing will be housed in the North Lodge, with the South Lodge being where the skiing and snowboarding is set up. The new owner also said that they are awaiting state approval to open the learning center for young skiers and snowboarders.
Taylor talked about the community support they have received throughout the whole endeavor.
“Everyone has been patient,” Taylor said. “With an independent ski hill, like us, it’s hard to compete with the bigger, state-funded mountains. But everyone has supported us greatly.”
Holiday Mtn. also had the first day of their Kinder Ski program last Saturday, which is a developmental program for young skiers between the ages of 5 and 6. The program will meet every Saturday and Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. for eight weeks. They also have their Holiday Mountaineers program, which is tailored towards young skiers between the ages of 7 and 16. The Holiday Mountaineers will meet every Saturday and Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., with an hour break for lunch from 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m., for 8 weeks.
Comments from locals
With a strong crowd of skiers and snowboarders alike hitting the slopes at Holiday Mtn. as they opened for the season, locals showed their passion for the sport and their hometown ski hill.
“Mr. Taylor is a very amazing man and he takes pride in Sullivan County, where he’s from,” Monticello seventh grader Giuliano Francisco said. “I am very happy with what he did for the community with Holiday Mountain.”
Joseph Stalter and his son Matthew of Wurtsboro hit the slopes last Saturday and were very happy with how it turned out.
“This is such a great thing for the community,” Joseph Stalter said. “Matthew’s little brother, Cam, is also in the racing program and has been doing well.”
The Holiday Mountain Development Race Program is a multi-week program open to advanced skiers 10 years old and older who are interested in the introductory level of ski racing or to elevate their existing race skills.
Matthew Stalter has been hitting the slopes since he was three years old, according to his parents. He said that he started as a skier, but changed over to snowboard at 11. His father, Joseph, is a skier.
“It was the cool thing to do,” Matthew Stalter said. “Everyone was snowboarding, so I wanted to try it out and I’ve been hooked ever since.”
For information on purchasing lift tickets, rentals and season passes, go to skiholidaymtn.com.
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