Snow News is Good News

Joe Stevens’ Annual ‘Awards’ for Our Southeast Region’s Ski Areas

Hello Everyone –.

This is my last column of the year and to cap off what some are considering a very good season in terms of weather and conditions across the region, I have come up with Joe’s sixth annual “SNOWY” awards or “SNOWIES” whichever suits you the best.

The committee (again this year consisting of me, myself and I) picked out ten categories and spent hours upon hours tabulating the results (believe that and I have another story for you). So without anymore (thank goodness) fanfare, here are the 2010/2011 season “SNOWIES”.

1. Most Indecisive – A repeat winner in this category. As again this year most weather forecasters decided to increase the range of forecasted snow from say three to five inches to three to ten inches. Just seemed nobody wanted to be wrong this year, a trend that I think really took shape last year.

2. Most Valuable – The majority of the resorts which took advantage of excellent weather conditions and opened terrain quickly for the all important holiday season, a make or break situation for the “for-profit” industry.

3. Unsung Hero – The ski and snowboard instructors who work with the first-timers. They have the patience of Job, making sure new skiers and snowboarders (young and old) have fun on the snow the first time out.

4. Most Overrated – Advanced weather forecasts, such as five and ten day forecasts. Unfortunately too many people give too much weight to those future forecasts and make incorrect plans accordingly.

5. Go For It – For the resorts that were willing to put the extra effort in making enough snow for terrain parks and tubing areas during the holiday period.

6. Fighting To The Bitter End – To the ski shops that had Spring Skiing and Riding Sales, instead of the dreaded End of the Season Sales.

7. Most Patience – A two-time winner this year, the region’s instructors, who understand it is okay to make mistakes in order to learn it right the first time.

8. Going The Extra Mile – Road crews that make that extra pass so that it was that much safer for travelers headed to the resorts during active weather periods.

9. Cy Young (Best Pitch) – Any resort that updated their website daily and sometimes twice a day with active weather was occurring.

10. Stepping Up To The Plate and Hitting It Out Of The Park – The region’s snowmakers for making enough snow that conditions remained good until the end, despite milder temperatures from mid-February on.

That’s it folks for the 2010/2011 season – it’s been fun riding with you again this year. Just remember to always be patient as whether it be cold or whether it be hot, we’ll weather the weather, whatever the weather will be. Think about it! Time to get tuned for the 2011/2012 season.

Send your comments to: [email protected]  

Joe Stevens, a member of the southeast ski industry since 1990 is a regular columnist for and serves as the Communications Director for the West Virginia Ski Areas Association.

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