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Two Midwest States Offer Grade School Passports

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The Michigan Snowsports Industries Association (MSIA) and Minnesota Ski Areas Association offer passport programs that allow elementary-age kids to give skiing and snowboarding a try for free. In Michigan, it covers both fourth and fifth graders. Minnesota’s program covers just fourth graders. Surprisingly Wisconsin, the Heartland state just behind Michigan for a number of ski areas doesn't offer such a program.

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Perfect North Slopes Acquires Timberline Four Season Resort

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Indiana's Perfect North Slopes is expanding its territory with the acquisition of West Virginia's Timberline Four Seasons Resort. It was purchased at an auction on November 20 with a bid of $2.2 million. Timberline had filed for bankruptcy earlier in the year when it abruptly closed for the 1918/19 season at the end of February.

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Montana Ski Resort Openings And Lift Ticket Specials

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Montana ski areas are opening over the next couple of weeks, and lift ticket deals are still available at several of them. Frequent skier cards, packs and punch cards can substantially help lower daily lift ticket costs. Check out early season specials and what's new around the state.

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Wisconsin's Tyrol Basin Is Expanding

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Tyrol Basin, located in the Wisconsin hill country southwest of the State Capital, went through an ownership change last season when new owner Nathan McGee bought the ski area in 2018. One of the older ski areas in the Badger State it first opened in 1958. Tyrol was also one of the first ski areas in the state to enthusiastically welcome snowboarders and is still considered one of the top places to ride.

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Insiders Guide: Boyne Highlands Resort

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Boyne Highlands' classic three-story hotel with its vine-covered alpine motif and ski hill rising behind the roofline is arguably one of the most iconic views among Heartland ski resorts. Rising over 550 feet, the largest vertical in Lower Michigan. An upgrade, transforming the iconic lodge into an upscale, luxury hotel is taking place in four phases with the first phase beginning this winter. When complete 85 newly furnished rooms and suites should be ready for next season.

Eats

The resort’s Saturday night Aonach Mor Moonlight Dinner held during January and February is a must; a sleigh ride up to the North Peak Lodge, elegantly set and a gourmet dinner with strolling minstrels tops off the evening. The popular dinner is being held nightly Dec. 26-30 and Jan. 1 and 4.The hotel dining room is one of the best in the Harbor Springs area. Overlooking the lit slopes is your “eye candy” for the meal. Teddy Griffin’s Roadhouse, just down the road, is a popular offsite restaurant.

Stay

The best place to stay is the hotel; the high-speed lift is right outside the door to the slopes. Two more nearby options: The Bartley House, a longtime family favorite, is home to the largest hot tub in the Midwest; the Heather Highlands Inn, just a short stroll from the main lodge, also offers hotel rooms and condominium suites.

Trails

The ski hill offers 55 runs, some over a mile long, four terrain parks, numerous glades, and eight lifts, including a high-speed quad. This classic Midwest ridge, bent and folded by the last retreating glacier, offers a visual distinctiveness with varied slopes and contours that are rare for the Heartland. It’s one of few resorts around the Great Lakes where you really need a trail map. The secluded North Face runs feel like a separate ski area. The front face offers over a dozen black-star slopes, one double-black and plenty of long cruising runs in between. Beginners have their own area and chairlift plus a magi-carpet.

Deals

Midweek three-night packages start from $98 per person, per night and include lift tickets and a hot buffet breakfast each morning. They are available all season long excluding holidays.

For Fun

When I first started visiting the resort years ago skiing was about the only reason you went. Today there are many other activities to enjoy. You can try the multiple-stage zipline tour, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, fat tire biking, horseback riding, and tubing in addition to skiing and riding.

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More Midwest Ski Areas Opening Over Next Couple Of Weeks

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With the winter-like cold air that's settled in over the Great Lakes, three more Midwest ski areas plan to open later this week with a couple more scheduled to open the following weekend.

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Wild Mountain First To Open In Midwest

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Minnesota’s Wild Mountain, located in a river valley east of the Twin Cities, opened for the winter season today, Tuesday, October 29.

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Combination Midwest Ski Passes Offer A Good Value

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A couple of ski areas near Detroit offer a popular combination season pass that benefits thousands of snowsports enthusiasts in the Motor City. Four popular Ohio ski areas grouped around the Cleveland/Akron metropolis also offer a similar season pass, again benefiting thousands.

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Top Halloween Events Around Midwest Ski Resorts

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From a stroll in a haunted forest to great pumpkin races, and a zipline of terror a trio of Heartland ski resorts have some haunting good fun planned leading up to this Halloween. It’s also prime fall color for chairlift rides to the top of the ski hills for some brilliant vistas.

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Insider’s Guide: Whitecap Mountain Resort

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Whitecap Mountains is tucked next to Weber Lake in northern Wisconsin’s rugged Ponokee Mountain range. The resort’s day lodge with the clock tower and Swiss motif went up in flames last January, but they were able to stay open.  

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Great Divide Ski Area Plans To Expand

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Montana’s Great Divide Ski Area is expanding with new terrain set to open this winter and future plans call for the addition of two new lifts.

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New Season Pass Options For Heartlanders

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For Midwestern skiers that like to get in a lot of slope time around the country outside the Heartland, a few new options are available for this season.

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Midwest Ski Country’s National Parks

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The mountains and high alpine lakes of the west, and New England’s rolling mountains lush with green forests create some of the nation’s more memorable national parks. But don’t overlook the Heartland’s beautiful lakeshores, prairies, rivers and thick forests of the upper Midwest.

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Boyne Mountain, Mount Bohemia Spring Challenge And More

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Once again the Spring Challenge between Michigan resorts Boyne Mountain and Mount Bohemia, located in the UP, is on. Which resort will keep the lifts turning longest and skiers and snowboarders on the slopes?

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Midwest Passes That Offer Multiple Ski Areas

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It’s the time of year when many consider ski pass purchases for next season. If you are happy skiing your favorite area only and not interested in passes offering multiple options, read no further. There are a few a few options for Heartland skiers that like to ski many areas over the winter, and three of the alternatives offer options for those that like to take a winter trip or three to the mountains.

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SnoCountry SnoShots: Midwest Spring, Sun And Snow

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It’s still ski and ride season across the upper Midwest. A great time to get out and enjoy springtime warmth, sun and snow as we put a wrap on this season, which has been one of the best in recent history across the Heartland. These eight areas are still open through at least this weekend and some are planning on staying open through the month.

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Skiing Into April Across Upper Midwest

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Early April can be a great time to hit the slopes and enjoy some spring time fever with the longer daylight hours and warmer temperatures. Seven Upper Midwest resorts are staying open into April, and some are offering enticing lift and lodging specials.

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South Dakota Ski Resort Back On Market

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A 440-acre ski resort in the Black Hills of South Dakota is again up for sale two years after it was shut down amid bankruptcy proceedings. The owners of the former Mystic Miner Ski Resort at Deer Mountain say they’ve cleaned up the property, made repairs and upgraded a water system serving residences near the resort, according to a story in the Rapid City Journal

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Montana Resorts Remain Open Into April With Good Spring Conditions

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The ski season is winding down across Montana, but the major ski areas are staying open into April. There’s plenty of time for Heartlanders to plan one more western trip to close out the season.

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Plenty Of Midwest Spring Break Opportunities

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Looking for some opportunities to ski over spring break? You don’t have to head out of the Heartland to find plenty of opportunity across the upper Midwest. Save on travel time, expense and enjoy some prime late season slope conditions.

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