THE SECOND ANNUAL SNOWIES – by Joe Stevens

Hello Everyone –

I have now experience my second season away from a mountain full-time. I have to admit scribing this weekly column has helped keep my big toe in the snow, so to speak.

This is my last column of the year and to cap off the season, I have come up with Joe’s second annual “SNOWY” awards or “SNOWIES” whichever suits you the best. The committee (again just me) picked out ten categories and spent hours upon hours tabulating the results (at least as long as the race lasted on FOX). So without anymore (thank goodness) fanfare, here are the 2006/2007 season “SNOWIES”.

1. Most Indecisive – For the second year in a row, the winner is Mother Nature. She teased everyone around the beginning of December then took a vacation until the middle of January, when winter finally hit.

2. Most Valuable – A tie between the region’s skiers and snowboarders and the resort’s snowmakers and groomers (last year’s winner). Both groups showed enormous amount of patience this year, waiting and waiting for winter to finally arrive.

3. Unsung Hero – The Guest Service representatives who had to handle all of the questions about the limited trail coverage through the middle of January.

4. Most Overrated – 10-day weather forecasting. Give it up folks, it’s going to change before it ever happens.

5. Go For It – For the second straight year, Cataloochee, Maggie Valley, North Carolina. Not only was Chris, Tammy and The Cat the first to open in the region, the Tar Heel State resort was the first to open in the east. Killington, who?

6. Fighting To The Bitter End – Wisp, Snowshoe, Timberline, Appalachian and Cataloochee. Keeping the slopes open through April 1, great job guys. Could’ve been longer if skiers and snowboarders realized just how much snow was still in the mountains.

7. Most Patience – Skiers and snowboarders on President’s weekend Saturday, a record skier visit day in the southeast and record lift line times also.

8. Going The Extra Mile – Any resort with an adaptive program. If you don’t know anything about the programs, it is time you find out.

9. Cy Young (Best Pitch) – Winterplace – located right off I-77 in West Virginia – make your turns on the slopes not getting to it.

10. Stepping Up To The Plate – Southeast Resorts – for putting in and maintaining the top snowmaking systems in the country. Just give them the cold temperatures and they will give skiers and snowboarders all of the snow they need to have fun.

That’s it folks for the 2006/2007 it’s been fun riding with you.

Remember whether it be cold or whether it be hot, we’ll weather the weather, whatever the weather will be. Think about it! See you on the slopes next season!

You can write comments or suggestions to Joe Stevens at [email protected]