By Kellen M. Quigley

As winter finally rolls in and feels like it’s here for the long term, why not spend a day (or two) on the slopes this January, the perfect month for skiing, snowboarding and all things snow sports.

January is National Learn a Snowsport Month, and Holiday Valley will be offering some great deals for adults all month long.

As of press time, 10 lifts at Holiday Valley were spinning and 34 trails were open, and at HoliMont, seven lifts were running with 21 trails open. However, those numbers may change with warmer weather predicted for this weekend.

On Friday, the Learn to Love Winter package at Holiday Valley is just $25. The Beginner’s Package includes a rental, beginner lift ticket and lesson.

Bring your friend, your spouse or your child along for the fun, because skiing and snowboarding are twice as fun when you have a buddy!

Then on Monday, take part in the first session of Rip ‘n Sip Ski-Learn-Drink! This fun winter series invites intermediate and advanced skiers and riders to enjoy the slopes as a group with themed instruction and a beverage from one of the mountain restaurants at the end of the night.  

Session dates are Jan. 13 and 27 and Feb. 10 and 24. You can come to all four or pick just the sessions you want. Meet at 6 p.m. at the clocktower. Cost is $59 with night ticket or $29 for instruction only.

If you’re interested in more night-time skiing, nine of Holiday Valley’s lifts run after dark, which means there’s still plenty of terrain to cover once the sun goes down. As the days start getting longer, the nights you can spend on the slopes will only get shorter.

With Martin Luther King Jr. Day next week, having that Monday off is the perfect reason for a three-day weekend to explore Ellicottville and all that it’s known for this time of year.

Whether you prefer your winter fun indoors or out, you’re sure to pack a whole lot of memories into three days.

Plus, long weekends mean more time on the slopes. On Jan. 20, HoliMont will also be open to the public. It’s the perfect opportunity to check out the private ski area!

Later this month, Mountain Ski Fest and the Intense Milk Rail Jam are both back on Friday, Jan. 24. Mountain Ski Fest includes a full day of skiing, riding, food, drink and good fun including equipment demos, races and clinics. 

In the Intense Milk Rail Jam, this fun park event is for skiers and riders in the rail park base of Mardi Gras. Free to enter but you must have a lift ticket and a helmet. Kids under 18 must have a parent signature to participate.

At the end of January, Holiday Valley Snowsports School is featuring the 7th annual “Your Turn” women’s clinic on Thursday and Friday, Jan. 30 and 31.

Led by Lisa Densmore Ballard, a widely acclaimed coach, instructor and ski racer, will be assisted by several of Holiday Valley’s finest women instructors. Intermediate through advanced level skiers will benefit from this clinic.

The clinic will begin at 8 a.m. with registration and breakfast. Pre-registration is advised as attendance is limited. Stop at or call the Snowsports School Desk, 699-2345 ext. 4422, or the Creekside Lodge Children’s Desk at 699-2345 ext. 4424.

The clinic includes two days of coaching, demo equipment, breakfast and lunch each day plus dinner on Thursday. Specially priced lift tickets will be available. Lodging special at the Inn at Holiday Valley for Wednesday and Thursday nights, Call 800-323-0020.

For even more downhill thrills and chills, check out Holiday Valley Tubing Company. Located just five minutes from downtown Ellicottville, the tubing park offers hours of downhill thrills.

In addition to regular hours Thursday through Sunday, the tubing park is open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 21 for Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

The Holiday Valley Tubing Company is located on the corner of Route 242 and Bryant Hill Road on the north side of Ellicottville. A free shuttle service to and from Holiday Valley is available every two hours during operating hours, with pickup at the Resort Services Center.

For more info, including rates, visit

Visit the Sky Flyer Mountain Coaster near the Tannenbaum Lodge and get ready for a thrilling ride down through the snowy woods.

The Coaster operates during the winter season from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday through Sunday, and also on Monday, Jan. 21.

With so many ways to enjoy the first month of the new year outdoors, January 2020 will be one to remember.