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March Madness in EVL

2-26-16-March-overview-(1)

By Alicia Dziak

It’s said that March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb. This year, it also covers St. Patrick’s Day, Easter, the end of winter, the beginning of spring, school spring break, and countless activities in between now and the end of March. Read on to see what EVL has in store.

There’s still plenty of winter left in Ellicottville, which translates to plenty of fun on the slopes!

On Friday, Feb. 26, head to Holiday Valley for Telestock, a day of peace, love and teleskiing. This event, sponsored by City Garage, features free rentals and a day of all things teleski with the pros.

On Sunday, Feb. 28, Holiday Valley hosts Aspire’s Ski the Valley to benefit children and adults with disabilities in WNY. The event is presented by Independent Health and takes place from noon to 6 p.m. Everyone is welcome to come listen to music and check out the awesome basket raffle on the top floor of the Lodge. For information visit www.aspirewny.org.

Head to Allegany State Park on Sunday, Feb. 28 for the Art Roscoe Loppet XC ski races. 6K, 13K & 22K Classic XC Skiing is the order of the day as this annual tradition continues to attract skiers from all over. The action takes place at the Allegany State Park Summit Ski Area in the Red House area of Allegany State Park.  For more info, visit www.heartrateup.com.

Head to HoliMont on March 3 for the Ski Day for United Way. Guests will enjoy a poker run, raffles, breakfast, lunch and a full day on the slopes. Register at www.uwcattco.org.

On March 4, HoliMont hosts Telefest, a fun-filled day of clinics and a potluck lunch. For more info, email snowsports@holimont.com.

On March 5, you can support adaptive skiers from all over in the annual Phoenix Rise to the Challenge Race, also at HoliMont. This day of feel-good fun is the highlight of the adaptive ski season.

March 11-13 is Mardi Gras and Winter Carnival weekend, where an action-packed weekend awaits.

Kick off the weekend with the Junior Bacchus Ball sponsored by the Ellicottville Chamber of Commerce, Friday from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Ellicottville Brewing Company. Tickets are $20 and dress is ski casual. During the Ball, candidates for King and Queen will give a quick speech on why they should be Mardi Gras royalty. Coronation will also take place. There will be music, food and a cash bar. Get your tix at www.ellicottvilleny.com.

Of course, the weekend will also feature parades in both the village (6:30 p.m. on Saturday) and at HV (noon on Sunday), so wear your beads and bring your smile. Holiday Valley’s Winter Carnival is a guaranteed great time, complete with the snow sculptures created by the talented HV employees, cookouts, costume contests and more.

Head back to Holiday Valley the following weekend (March 19-20) for the annual Pond Skimming weekend. Sign up to skim across an ice-water filled pond or just watch and cheer for your fave competitors. Registration will be outside Yodeler Lodge starting at 11 a.m. for $5. Kids under 18 must have a parent’s signature, minimum age is 8 years old. Pond Skimming starts about 1 p.m. and prizes are awarded for Best Skimmer, Best Costume, Best Kid and Best Splash. All participants get a one-day pool pass for the Holiday Valley pool complex to be used this summer. Music, a mini-snowbar with margaritas and beer specials, barbeque and more add to the fun!

On Sunday, March 20, take part in Holiday Valley’s Northwind Super-G. Register at the Training Center for $5 per racer. Training runs from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. Rangers race at 11 a.m., everyone else races at 12:30 p.m.

For those who like to ski or ride under the stars, night skiing at Holiday Valley is available through Saturday, March 19. Twilight skiing is available March 20-26 and after that, the lifts close at 4:30 p.m.

Late in the season is also a great time to explore HV’s XC ski and snowshoe trails along the golf course and at the ridgeline by Spruce Lake. Rentals for both are available on-site. Consider purchasing a two-ride lift ticket to get you to the top. For more info, visit holidayvalley.com.

The Sky Flyer Mountain Coaster operates from 11a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday through Sunday, and holidays, weather permitting. Soar down the mountain in your own coaster car that spans numerous twists and turns.

HV’s Tubing Park stays open through March 18. Get a ride up the hill, then fly back down solo or with some friends. Warm up in the lodge with snacks and hot cocoa, then head back out!

Every spring, the members of the New York State Maple Producers Association invite families and friends into their “sugarhouses” on two different weekends (this year they’re March 19-20 and April 2-3) to experience the world of pure NY maple syrup. Located at approximately 160 farms and museums across the state, Maple Weekends offers a delicious, fun-filled outing that has a little something for all maple-lovers to taste and experience. For more info and to find participating maple farms, visit www.nysmaple.com. Want even more maple? Head to Franklinville’s annual Maple Festival April 23-24 for all you can eat pancakes, demonstrations and a craft show.

March 19-20 also brings the WNY EquiFest to the Hamburg Fairgrounds. Check out more than 100 exhibitors, shows, demos, and lots of family-friendly activities. For more info, visit www.wnyequifest.com.

How about an adrenaline rush? Whitewater rafting season begins in March. Be part of a rafting adventure down the Cattaraugus Creek, and get spectacular views of Zoar Valley, and maybe even an eagle soaring above, along the way. For more info, visit www.ZoarValleyRafting.com, www.Adventure-Calls.com or CattRaftingAdventures.com.

Get in on all the action this March! This is Ellicottville after all, and fun is always at the top of the list!

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