The new year has brought changes to local ski resorts and surrounding areas. Canaan Valley Resort's ski school has new leadership, Timberline Four Seasons Resort has a new snow gun, Canaan Valley Store is being converted to a BFS Foods convenience store with a Subway sandwich shop and Snowshoe Mountain Resort hopes to demystify snowmaking.
New leadership at Canaan Valley Resort
Mike Chaney, the manager for Canaan Valley Resort's ski area, was faced with the task of finding new leadership for the ski school this season. Chaney selected Fritz Corey, Bill Smith and Ray LaMora, veterans of Canaan's ski school, to serve as supervisors.
COMING SOON — A BFS Foods convenience store and a Subway will be filling the empty Canaan Valley Store space. Owner Marshall Bishop said the store and Subway should be open in early February. (Photos courtesy of Debra Wolf)
FRESH POWDER — Timberline Four Seasons Resort has added a new snowmaker for the mountain. The Pole Cat snow gun, has yet to be installed but will soon be blasting out fresh powder. (Photo courtesy of Debra Wolf)
Corey oversees weekdays, while Smith and LaMora fulfill responsibilities on weekends.
"I hand-picked these instructors. They have expertise," Chaney said.
Corey has been at Canaan for 18 years, LaMora has taught for 22 years and Smith has been in the ski industry for 36 years.
Canaan's ski school has around 60 instructors.
"We have dynamite new people to work with," LaMora said.
The resort has placed Pat Marano at the ski school desk to direct and organize all activities. This is Marano's second year with the ski school.
Still somewhat of a newcomer, Marano said he hasn't had the chance to try airboarding, one of Canaan's newest snow sports.
"A lot of people sign up for airboarding and come back in after a lesson and sign up for another two hours," Marano said. "I want to give it a go."
Alicia Monahan, a representative of Face Level Sports, periodically visits Canaan to encourage participation in the airboarding sport. Monahan will be on hand Feb. 5 for the next scheduled airboarding race.
A snow gun
Timberline Four Seasons Resort has acquired a new snow gun.
"We add to our mountain by increasing our ability to make snow," Tom Blanzy, general manager, said.
Timberline recently traded three Viking snow guns for its new addition, a Pole Cat snow gun from Snow Machines Inc., a snow-making equipment company based in Midland, Michigan. The new gun has a value of $22,500.
"The Pole Cat can make snow at warmer temperatures. It will be used at the bottom of Lower Salamander trail. It will be near the teaching and beginning ski areas," said Amos Bennett, mountain manager.
A telemark workshop will be featured at the resort today, and a Rail Jam event is scheduled for Jan. 29.
Easier access to the area
Michael Cosgrove is a regular patron to Timberline Four Seasons Resort. Cosgrove travels with his family of four to West Virginia from his home in Lexington Park, Maryland. On his recent trips, Cosgrove has been utilizing sections of Corridor H roads.
"Our trip is quicker using Corridor H. We save an hour and 15 minutes," Cosgrove said. "The route is scenic. There are very nice views."
Cosgrove has two small children, ages 2 and 4, who make the journey with him. Cosgrove says the route benefits his children, too.
"The kids are less car sick," Cosgrove said.
A BFS Foods store and Subway coming to Canaan
Marshall Bishop, owner of BFS Companies, recently purchased Canaan Valley Store. The store is currently being converted to house a BFS Foods convenience store and a Subway.
The store's opening is expected to take place in early February.
"We have purchased the store," said BFS Marketing Director Hayley Graham. "We are trying to grow the company in every direction.
"We have been wanting to expand into more parts of West Virginia," she said. We are coming, and we intend to stay. We are also bringing a Subway. A survey was taken of what would work best in the area, and as a result of our findings, a Subway was selected."
Best of Canaan Realty has also set up business in one portion of the building. Amy Fiorini serves as the agency broker and Donna Patrick serves as the rental manager. The office provides property management and vacation rental services.
More information may be obtained at www.bestofcanaan.com.
Snowshoe explains the snowmaking process
Snowshoe Mountain Resort is offering snowmaking seminars to those who are curious about how snow on the mountain gets made and how it is groomed.
The seminars are lead by a snowmaking and grooming manager for the resort. The seminars will allow guests to learn all about the entire snowmaking process.
"The seminars have been a success. The guests that have participated are genuinely interested and engaged in learning about the snowmaking process," Snowshoe Mountain Resort Communications Manager Laura Parquette said. "Our guests from southern states find snow to be a big mystery."
The seminars are on Saturday evenings, free, open to the public and are about 45 minutes.
Groups meet at The Depot located in The Village of Snowshoe Mountain Resort in Pocahontas County.