iloveny-stack.jpgSki and Stay Free, 4th Graders Ski Free, and a Frequent Skier Card For Ski Season

New York, NY -New York State, ranked #4 in the nation this year with 4 million skier visits, is kicking off the winter ski season with loads of value-packed offerings across its 1000 ski trails and 48 ski resorts. Adding to the savings, I LOVE NEW YORK (http://www.iloveny.com/), New York State's tourism promotion agency, announces three value-added opportunities for winter snow sport enthusiasts seeking powder-packed excitement, including the "4th Graders Ski Free," "Ski and Stay" and "Catskills Frequent Skier Card" promotions.

According to Thomas Ranese, chief marketing officer of Empire State Development, there has never been a better time to take advantage of great value opportunities than in New York State this winter. At a time when consumers are looking for drive destinations and meaningful travel incentives, New York State is offering the hard-hitting deals that savvy travelers are demanding. "With nearly 100 downhill and cross-country ski areas and 48 ski resorts throughout our 11 vacation regions, New York is home to more ski areas than any other in the country," said Ranese. "In fact, the snow sport industry has a $1 billion impact on New York State's economy. New York State's ski areas are also easily accessible and within close proximity to New York City." 4th Graders Ski For Free Fourth graders from across the country can ski or ride for free at more than 25 participating New York State ski areas this winter when accompanied by a paying adult.  Interested participants are asked to fill out an application form available at http://www.44free.com/ and send it in with a $19 processing fee to the address provided, along with a report card, progress report or letter from their school verifying the child is in the 4th grade. Applicants will receive a seasonal 4th Grade Passport booklet of coupons including free all-day lift tickets, with the purchase of an adult lift ticket. Note: Redemption rules on season passes and other special passes vary by ski area, applicants should contact the ski area ahead of time for more information. Limited to three visits per participating area. Blackout dates apply. "At a time when childhood obesity is rampant in the U.S, we're providing the perfect excuse to put down the TV remote or video game controller and have some healthy fun," said Scott Brandi, president of the Ski Areas of New York. "This program provides tremendous opportunities for children to get an introduction to a lifetime activity that is healthy, wholesome and family-oriented. Skiing and snowboarding boost self-esteem and allow children and adults to have fun, get outdoors and exercise all at the same time." Ski and Stay For the weekends of January 9, February 6 and March 6, guests can book a weekend "ski and stay" package and get the third night's lodging and a third day of skiing for free at participating properties, including Gore Mountain, Greek Peak Mountain, Holiday Valley and Hunter Mountain.  For a complete listing of participating properties and to book this package, visit http://www.skiandrideny.com/Catskills Promotion The Catskill Association for Tourism Services, in collaboration with the five participating resorts, has launched a Frequent Skier Card offering skiers 20 percent off lift tickets throughout the 2009-10 season.  The resorts include Belleayre, Hunter, Windham, Plattekill and Holiday Mountain. The Frequent Skier Card is available for $25 and includes lift ticket discounts able to be redeemed at all five resorts. The card will be available for purchase starting December 1, 2009 at http://www.mycatscard.com/ or by calling (800) 697-2287. The personalized CATS Card must be presented with photo identification to purchase tickets at the discounted rate. The card is not valid on holidays, cannot be combined with other offers and is non-transferable. The New York State Winter Guide is now available at http://www.iloveny.com/. Also, visit I LOVE NEW YORK'S new Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/pages/I-LOVE-NEW-YORK/118914714168. About New York State New York State features 11 beautiful vacation regions.  New York's attractions span from landmarks such as Niagara Falls, to the wine trails of Hudson Valley and treasures like the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown.  Whether it's wide-ranging outdoor activities for the whole family like fishing, hiking and boating, culinary wonders and farm-to-table fresh foods, or the rich history and culture of one of the 13 original colonies, New York State offers diverse activities for all travelers.  For more information, visit http://www.iloveny.com/.  Media can find press releases and more at thebeat.iloveny.com.

# # #

 

Contact: Michelle Horn/Terence Gallagher Lou Hammond & Associates (212) 308-8880; Fax: (212) 891-0200 michelleh@lhammond.com / terryg@lhammond.com Lisa Willner Empire State Development Corporation (212) 803-3740 lwillner@empire.state.ny.us