SOURCE: Michigan Snowsports Industries Association

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February 24, 2011 17:20 ET

Soft Snow, Long Days, Great Discounts Make Spring Skiing, Snowboarding Ideal

CLARKSTON, MI--(Marketwire - February 24, 2011) - Shorter lift lines, low-season rates, carnivals and other fun activities plus some of the best snow conditions await skiers and snowboarders on Michigan ski slopes. Many ski areas remain open through the end of March, and some stay open well into April because of deep bases of machine-made snow.

"Spring is my favorite time of the year to ski and Snowboard in Michigan," says Steve Kershner, chairman of the Michigan Snowsports Industries Association (MSIA) and director of skiing at Shanty Creek in Bellaire. "The days are longer, the sun is high in the sky, the snow is soft and ski areas offer discount rates to get people on the slopes one last time."

Spring carnivals with ski races across man-made ponds, costume contests, St. Patrick's Day celebrations and other events abound. "Just about every ski area in the state has some sort of spring carnival with special reduced lift tickets or lodging rates," states Mickey MacWilliams, MSIA executive director. She encourages skiers to check MSIA's website, www.goskimichigan.com and click on the "News, Events, Specials & Discounts" button, which is updated almost daily. Easy links to Michigan ski area websites are also available at www.goskimichigan.com.

Efficient snowmaking has given Michigan ski areas the ability to start the season earlier, provide more consistent conditions during the season and stay open longer into the spring, explains MacWilliams. Most ski areas across the state are scheduled to be open for at least a few more weeks, with those in the northern portion of the Lower Peninsula and those in the Upper Peninsula typically stay open at least into late March. Although numerous Michigan ski resorts will stay open into April, MacWilliams advises skiers to call ahead for snow conditions at the ski area they plan to visit, or to check online. Links to ski conditions across Michigan are available on MSIA's website, http://www.goskimichigan.com/.

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