The equipment is up at Winter Park. Now all that’s needed is a little winter.
The installation and inspection of the new Magic Carpet has been completed at the park just west of Kewaunee.
The Kewaunee County Promotion & Recreation Department expects to fire up its five snow guns to create perfect conditions for snow tubing, skiing and snowboarding, once the temperature to drop below 20 degrees. With a blustery few days, starting with a wind advisory until 6 p.m. Tuesday and highs projected to be in the 20s for the rest of the week, that doesn’t seem so far away anymore.
On Thursday, a state inspector with Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services visited Winter Park to sign off on the Magic Carpet, the standing conveyor belt lift, located at the six-lane snow tubing hill, which has a 220-foot slope with a 70-foot vertical drop and an approximate 17-degree pitch.
The Kewaunee County Board approved the purchase of the Magic Carpet in March with a $110,000 loan to the Winter Park Association to be paid back to the county within the next five years.
The process to put the moving walkway together, which included the assembly of the frame and belt, electrical hookup and computer programing, took volunteers with the Winter Park Association approximately 16 weeks.
“Kewaunee County has the only snow tubing hill in Northeast Wisconsin to have a Magic Carpet and it’s a great feature to have for the thousands of people who visit the park; you stand on it with your tube and enjoy the ride up the hill,” said Dave Myers, Kewaunee County promotion and recreation director. “We expect to become busier than ever before, of course with the cooperation of Mother Nature.”
“We know that our visitors love Winter Park, so it makes us happy to be able to give them something more that will continue to make their experience here memorable and at a price that won’t break the bank,” added Jennifer Schneider, Kewaunee County tourism coordinator/public information officer.
The Kewaunee County Promotion & Recreation Department is asking that visitors keep off the snow tubing and skiing hills when the park is not open to the public, as well as the Magic Carpet when it’s not in use, in order to keep the belt in its best condition.
When the park opens for winter recreation, hours and ticket prices for the public will be:
Skiing/Snowboarding: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday. $15 per person for a full day, or $12 per person for a group of 10 or more. $80 for the entire season. Children 5 and under are free with a paid adult, and skis and snowboards can be rented for $10 a day.
Snow Tubing: 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday. $8 per person for two hours or $35 for a family of five. Tube rentals are free.
Snowshoeing: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday. Admission to the snowshoe trails is free, and snowshoes can be rented for $5 daily.
The park does not accept checks; only credit/debit cards, cash and gift certificates are accepted.
People interested in making private-party reservations at Winter Park can save a date with the Kewaunee County Promotion & Recreation Department by calling 920-388-0444.
Reservations can be made for open dates Monday-Friday starting Jan. 5. Rates for group reservations are $175/residents and $185/non-residents. There is also a 50 minimum ticket purchase at $4/per ticket for each person. This includes three hours of tubing and use of the ski chalet. All reservations are weather dependent and subject to cancellation by the department if conditions are deemed unsafe or due to an abrupt change in weather. (Checks are accepted for private rentals.)
If you are looking for an opportunity to volunteer, the Winter Park Association is always looking for help with weekend concession sales and equipment rentals. Contact Barry Nelson at 920-388-3738.