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Holiday Valley to expand off-season attractions

ELLICOTTVILLE -- Holiday Valley plans to add new two attractions designed to expand the ski resort's summer business.

The company announced this week it plans to build a "mountain coaster" and an aerial adventure park in a wooded area of the Ellicottville resort.

"Plans for increasing our summer business have been going on for quite a while," said Jane Eshbaugh, Holiday Valley marketing director.

Construction on the mountain coaster is expected to start in the spring and wrap up this summer. Eshbaugh said the attraction will be similar to a roller coaster, but riders will be able to control their speed with hand brakes in each car. The rail will zig zag and spiral on a downward path.

The coaster, which will be built next to the resort's Spruce Line slope, will operate throughout the year. Wiegand Sports of Utah will design and construct the attraction.

Holiday Valley officials also expect to begin construction this winter on an aerial adventure course that will operate in the spring, summer and fall when the ski slopes are closed.

The aerial park, which will be built by Outdoor Ventures Group of Southport, Conn., will have roughly 170 wooden platforms built into trees in a 4-acre section of the resort. Logs, rope bridges and zip lines will connect the platforms to create different levels of challenge courses.

Eshbaugh said she could not yet provide the cost of constructing both attractions because contracts have not yet been finalized.

Holiday Valley, which has 58 ski slopes, operates a golf course and swimming pool in the summer months.

"Since the beginning, we have been trying to incorporate summer activities," Eshbaugh said.

The course will be modeled after a similar aerial park built at Sandy Spring near Washington, D.C., Eshbaugh said. Holiday Valley officials expect to open the aeriel park in June. 

See the Sandy Spring course in this video:

--Denise Jewell Gee

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