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Thursday, March 31, 2011

Ski areas going out with a splash

EDITOR’S NOTE: Ski WiP is the place to find out what’s happening at ski areas across the state. It’s where you’ll find previews of special events, deals and races at New Hampshire mountains for the upcoming weekend. This will be the last update of the season.

In the final ski weekend of the season for most New Hampshire mountains, there are plenty of pond-skimming events on the horizon, and two other notable appearances: from Olympic skier Bode Miller at Cannon Mountain and the rock band O.A.R. at Mount Sunapee.

For all the events happening Friday-Sunday, April 1-3, look below:

Attitash

The mountain’s third annual Pond Skim contest will start at noon, with registration and practice runs in the morning.

The event is the finale for the mountain’s Spring Mania schedule, and will feature plenty of skiers in costumes and swimsuits racing down the mountain and skimming across a large man-made pool. Awards will be handed out at 3 p.m.

Cannon Mountain

Olympic gold medalist Bode Miller will be at Cannon this weekend for BodeFest, the annual event to raise money for the Turtle Ridge Foundation, which supports environmental initiatives and youth athletes across the country.

Miller is a four-time world skiing champion, has won five Olympic medals, and spent much of his youth skiing at Cannon Mountain. He will appear on Saturday to ski with kids and sign autographs.

Tickets are sold out, according to Cannon’s website. Anyone who didn’t buy a ticket in time can still participate in the silent and live auctions held during the day to benefit the foundation.

Loon Mountain

The annual Slush Pool Party with pond skimming and other activities is scheduled for noon Saturday. Registration begins at 9 a.m.

The pond skim is free for the first 75 people older than 10 with a signed waiver. Skiers younger than 18 need a parent signature.

The event will be held at the Octagon Lodge at the base.

Mount Sunapee

Throwing a fun twist into an already packed weekend, Mount Sunapee is hosting the popular rock band O.A.R. for a concert on Saturday night under a huge tent in the parking lot. The Pete Kilpatrick Band and DJ Logic will open the show.

More than 1,000 tickets have been sold. The concert will conclude a long day with FestEVOL, which will showcase EVOL Burritos and the IZStyle Winter Tour with businesses and products that support a sustainable environment or all-natural and organic foods. There will also be ski and snowboard demonstrations.

Tickets are $40 for the concert only and $85 for the lift ticket and concert package.

The mountain’s annual Slush Pool competition will be Sunday. Skiers will skim across a 90-foot pond for prizes.

Ragged Mountain

Reggae music and Red Stripe beer make the mountain’s Spring Fling party on Saturday an original twist on an old standard.

Ragged will also have pond skimming for skiers and live music by Saylyn Reggae.

Waterville Valley

The mountain will celebrate April Fool’s Day on Friday with what might seem like joke prices, but they’re for real. Skiers can buy a lift ticket for just $1 on that day.

Then on Sunday, the mountain will host its own pond skim event in one of the state’s biggest and deepest ponds. Registration lasts from 8-10 a.m. at the Event Yurt and is open to the first 70 participants. Awards will follow at the lodge.

Pats Peak

The Snowmobile Hill Climb Challenge is Saturday, and Pats Peak is hosting the event with the Weare Winter Wanderers Snowmobile Club.

Tickets are available for racers, spectators and those who want to ride the chairlift.

The Hill Climb will be from 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m., but radar runs will be timed from 8-9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Radar racers can pay just $10 for unlimited runs, but they must also be registered for the Hill Climb. The entry fee is $25 plus the cost of an event ticket, which is $12.

Spectator gates open at 7 a.m. Tickets are $12 per person or free for children 6 and younger. Chairlift rides start at 9 a.m. for $10 per person. A combo ticket for spectators who want to also ride the chairlift is $20.

There will also be demo snowmobile rides of new sleds made by Arctic Cat, Polaris and Ski-Doo.

Backpacks, coolers and pets aren’t allowed. An awards ceremony will follow.

In the Sled Pub, there will be live music by Nicks Other Band throughout the night. Fireworks will go off at 8 p.m.

Wildcat Mountain

The annual Wet Ditch Skim Contest is slated for Saturday and the Spring Ski Bash, hosted by Portland rock radio station WCYY, will continue throughout the day.

An apres ski bar party will follow in the Wildcat Pub for skiers and riders older 21 starting at 3 p.m.

Cameron Kittle can be reached at 594-6523 or ckittle@nashuatelegraph.com. The Telegraph and NH.com have launched a website that’s a one-stop place for the latest New Hampshire ski news, events and ticket giveaways. The site features live Twitter feed from the slopes and a map plotting each resort. Visit www.nh.com/skiing to see updates throughout the week.