Ski Wentworth gearing up for 2011 Canada Winter Games

Jason Malloy
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WENTWORTH - The transformation of Ski Wentworth has begun in preparation for the 2011 Canada Winter Games.
"You can see a huge difference already," general manager Leslie Wilson said Wednesday. "It's so exciting. We haven't seen anything like this out here since the blue chair went in the late 1980s."
The main chairlift was installed in 1988 and while renovations and upgrades are done regularly, this year's work is a major undertaking.
The hill is receiving a $3.2-million makeover to enable it to host the alpine and freestyle skiing events for the Games, which will be hosted by Halifax from Feb. 11-27, 2011. Three levels of government are funding the renovations at the ski hill while the hill is providing some in-kind support.
As of yesterday, the games were 596 days away.
Construction started about two weeks ago and is expected to be complete by the fall. The goal is to have a year of skiing to see if any changes need to be done next summer.
The work includes new trails for the moguls and aerial competitions. The new moguls will be located between the T-bar and the Beaver with the aerials being held below the moguls.
The Sissy is also being widened for the race events and a new trail, to be called the Sugar Shack, is being created so skiers can bypass the race event during the Games but still be close enough to watch.
"It's been really interesting to watch the mountain change right in front of your eyes," Wilson said. "People will be shocked when they see all the changes. It's going to make a huge difference. It's going to be great."
New equipment, including pumps, compressors and about 80 new snow guns, are also being installed. The change will enable the hill to double its' snowmaking capacity. Just two years ago, the hill doubled its capacity as well.
The change will enable the hill to open sooner and with more trails.
This summer's work is a boost to the local economy with about 25 people working on the renovations.
Ski Wentworth will host the Canadian Junior Freestyle Ski Championship in March as a test event for the Canada Games. The freestyle event will include the mogul and aerial events.

Organizations: Sugar Shack, Canada Games

Geographic location: Canada

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