Snowy weather draws skiers and snowboarders to Ellicottville this weekend

Local News

ELLICOTTVILLE, N.Y. (WIVB) — It was a busy day on the slopes at Holiday Valley Saturday, as skiers and snowboarders took advantage of all the snow that fell across the area this week.

The folks at Holiday Valley told News 4 it was the busiest day they’ve had all season. And plenty of people were out on the slopes. Holiday Valley is hoping this means their luck is turning around.

“Wow what a change, we got some nice natural snow,” said Jane Eshbaugh, the resort’s marketing director. “It was really cold so we made a lot of snow. We were able to open more terrain, more lifts and we were really busy.”

Skiers and snowboarders across Western New York all had the same idea: hit the slopes. 

“It’s the best time to be out this year and, as you can tell, it’s so busy,” said snowboarder Jeffrey Doerflein.

“My first time coming out this season,” added fellow snowboarder Jake Shepard. “Conditions were perfect so it made for a good day.”

“It’s is really busy,” said skier Nathan Hamm. “And we’re glad to see it, because it’s the first snowfall of the year and it’s been a great time.” 

Eshbaugh said the weather this week helped draw people to the resort and to Ellicottville. 

“The cold weather really helped up step it up a lot, so that’s definitely a benefit,” she said. “And we have more cold weather around the corner, so hopefully we’ll be in full operation very soon.”

It wasn’t just the ski resort that was busy. Local restaurants, bars and shops also saw a boom in business this weekend.

“It’s been awesome,” said John O’Connell, the bar manager at Finnerty’s Tap Room. “We finally got snow here in Ellicottville, and I know you got it up north. We were so grateful to get it and once we got it, everybody just mobbed Ellicottville.”

“It spreads everyone around,” Eshbaugh said. “Spreads the business out. Lots of lodging here at the slopes and in town, so it’s great. It benefits everybody.”

Officials said they had 22 slopes open Saturday and are looking to open up more as long as the weather holds up. 

Sarah Minkewicz is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.

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