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Weather provides slick sports opportunities |

Weather provides slick sports opportunities

| Tuesday, December 28, 2010 12:00 a.m

Frances Maben had planned on just watching.

But the 65-year-old Penn Hills woman couldn’t resist the lure of slip-sliding down a snow-covered hillside.

“I got drawn in, and I got on that tube and I had such a thrill,” said Maben, who joined friends and family at the Boyce Park Ski Area in Plum on Monday for the season’s opening day. “I haven’t been here since my children were little.”

Between 9 a.m. and noon, nearly 300 people bought passes for the day, typical for an opening day, Manager Tom Mettrick said.

It had been a while since the weather cooperated and allowed the slopes to open between Christmas and New Year’s, Allegheny County spokeswoman Colleen Elms said.

Last year the county delayed opening the ski lift at the park because the state wouldn’t issue an operating permit until it had done an inspection. The county installed a $30,000 control system for the lift after the 2008-09 season because it was stopping intermittently.

Elms said the ski lift passed a state inspection in October and ran smoothly in test runs. Still, the main ski hill was closed yesterday because of some bare spots, though the snow tubing lanes and the bunny hill were open.

Park officials made snow all day, and they expected the ski hill and lift to be open today, when lift tickets are free, Elms said. The promotion will be offered every Tuesday throughout the season.

Nancy Ley of Ross said she was disappointed to find the ski hill closed.

“We called (Sunday) night and reserved our skis and paid for passes,” Ley said. She was there with her three children who went snow boarding on the bunny slope instead.

Several families waiting their turn to go tubing said they come to Boyce because it’s an ideal place for children.

“There aren’t long lines usually, so they get a lot of slope time,” said Kathy Hoel of Point Breeze. She brought her son, Jackson McCullough, to the park for his eighth birthday. His sister Bree, 10, joined him.

“It’s nice because the slopes are their size,” Hoel said.

Additional Information:

Sports in the snow


Holiday locations and hours to ski and skate in Pittsburgh and Allegheny County:

Boyce Park Ski Area

• Today-Thursday and Sunday: 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; 5-10:30 p.m.

• New Year’s Eve: 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

• New Year’s Day: Noon-10:30 p.m.

For more information, call 724-733-4656.

North Park Ice Rink

• Today and Wednesday: Noon-3, 4:30-7 and 7:30-9 p.m.

• Thursday: Noon-3 and 7:30-9 p.m.

• New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day: Noon-6 p.m.

For more information, call 724-935-1280.

South Park Ice Rink

• Today-Thursday: Noon-3, 4:30-7 and 7:30-9 p.m.

• New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day: Noon-6 p.m.

For more information, call 412-833-1499.

Schenley Skating Rink

• Today: 1:30-3:30, 4-6:30, 7-9 and 9:30-11:30 p.m. (Last session for adults only.)

• Wednesday and Thursday: 1:30-3:30, 4-6:30 and 7-9 p.m.

• New Year’s Eve: 1:30-3:30 p.m.

• New Year’s Day: 1:30-3:30, 4-6:30, 7-9 and 9:30-11:30 p.m. (Last session for adults only.)

For more information, call 412-422-6523.

Winter Classic Community Rink at Stage AE

• Today-Thursday: 6:30-7:50 p.m.

• New Year’s Eve: 6:30 p.m.-midnight

• Jan. 1: 6-7:30 p.m.

(The rink at Stage AE closes after Jan. 1.)

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