orda-black-and-white.jpgNew York State Leads Nation with 50 Ski Areas Albany, N.Y. --- Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that Whiteface Mountain, in Wilmington and Gore Mountain in North Creek, will open this weekend for the 2013-14 season. As Winter approaches, the Governor today also encouraged ski enthusiasts to visit the new I SKI NY website (http://www.iskiny.com/) to view snow reports, access ski deals, and learn more about the New York skiing experience. "This weekend, we are opening Whiteface and Gore Mountains to kick off the ski season in New York where we have unmatched recreational opportunities for New Yorkers and out-of-state visitors looking to enjoy the slopes," Governor Cuomo said. "Whether you're a beginner or black diamond conqueror, New York's ski areas offer a vast range of experiences for all levels of skiers and snowboarders. As the State works to boost our tourism industry, our ski areas are an asset in attracting visitors to Upstate New York so that we can grow the local economy and support jobs in those communities. I encourage New Yorkers and visitors to dust off their skis and snowboards, plan their trip with ‘I SKI NY' and hit one of our trails this winter." According to a report issued by the National Ski Areas Association, of the 37 states with operating ski areas, New York leads with 50 areas in operation during the 2012-13 season, followed by Michigan's 42, Wisconsin's 32 and Pennsylvania with 28. Whiteface Mountain will open tomorrow, Friday, Nov. 15, while Gore Mountain is slated to begin the 2013-'14 season on Saturday, Nov. 16. Friday's first day will mark the Olympic mountain's earliest ever opening, topping last year when the resort opened on Nov. 17, while this is the second earliest ever opening for Gore Mountain, dating back to the 1986-'87 season when it opened on Nov. 15. Five trails, from the summit to the base of Little Whiteface will be open this weekend. Excelsior, Summit Express, Upper Valley, Lower Valley and the Fox trails will all be ready for skiing and riding. Whiteface Mountain general manager Aaron Kellett said, "The crew has been doing a great job getting the mountain ready, and we're very excited that we'll be open early for the second straight year. The new snowmaking guns have really allowed us to cover quite a bit of the mountain and we've been able to do this more efficiently than in years past." At Gore, The Sunway Lift will take skiers and riders to the Jamboree Trail. The resort's terrain park, at the bottom of the arena, as well as the cafeteria and rental shop will also be in operation. Gore's general Manager Mike Pratt said, "Mother Nature has given us a window of opportunity. We're excited to be opening the 80th season of skiing and riding in North Creek." Whiteface lift tickets this weekend are $38 for adults, $33 for teens and seniors and $28 for juniors. Lift tickets at Gore are $38. Skiers and riders who bring a non-perishable food item to Gore Mountain's "Gore Gives" program, benefiting local food banks, will receive a $10 discount, up to two discounts per ticket. After this weekend, Whiteface and Gore will close Sunday, at 4 p.m., and re-open Friday, Nov. 22. In Highmount, N.Y., Belleayre Ski Resort is making snow in anticipation of a Friday, Nov. 29, opening. Preseason pricing on season passes has been extended through Sunday, Nov. 17. Log onto http://www.whitefacelakeplacid.com/ for details. Trails and lifts are subject to change this weekend. Please log on to http://www.whitefacelakeplacid.com/ before coming to either mountain for the latest conditions. For additional information on upcoming openings of ski areas around the state go to http://www.iskiny.com/ and http://www.iloveny.com/. Media Advisory: Media wanting to come to Whiteface Mountain or Gore Mountain and cover the opening weekend of the skiing and riding season should contact Jon Lundin, ORDA public relations, at 518-637-6885, e-mail: jlundin@orda.org.


-- ORDA --

Established in 1982, the New York State Olympic Regional Development Authority (ORDA) was created by the State of New York to manage the facilities used during the 1980 Olympic Winter Games at Lake Placid. ORDA operates Whiteface, Belleayre and Gore Mountain ski areas; the Olympic Sports Complex at Mt. Van Hoevenberg; the Olympic speedskating oval, Olympic jumping complex and Olympic arena. As host to international and national championships, the Authority has brought millions of athletes, spectator and participants to the region, resulting in significant economic development.  Contact: Jon Lundin jlundin@orda.org 518-523-1655 ext. 5313