Lost Valley ski area owners, supporters still trying to find a way to open for 2014-15 season

A sign along the Maine Turnpike tells motorists that Exit 75 leads to Lost Valley and Sugarloaf ski areas.
Daryn Slover | Sun Journal
A sign along the Maine Turnpike tells motorists that Exit 75 leads to Lost Valley and Sugarloaf ski areas.
Posted Aug. 28, 2014, at 3:22 p.m.

AUBURN, Maine — One of the owners of the Lost Valley ski area said Thursday the resort and community volunteers were steadily pulling together a plan that may allow them to open for the 2014-2015 snow sports season.

Lincoln Hayes said a recent meeting with members of the Auburn Ski Association yielded some promising results, but final details of a plan for ski and snowboard operations this winter were still on ice.

“We’ve made some really good progress, but we just aren’t at a place where we are able to give a final answer,” Hayes said.

In early June, the ski resort, which first opened in 1961, announced they were in financial trouble and would be unable to open for the winter season.

But since then, an outpouring of community support along with help from the Androscoggin Valley Council of Governments, other Maine ski area executives and state and local officials, the resort may be able to open, Hayes said.

Hayes said an energy audit from Efficiency Maine has just been completed and a business plan is coming together. Hayes said he was encouraged by the outpouring of help but noted more support would be needed going forward.

“People really want to know what they can do to help and we are working on that, and I believe we are going to be able to tell them soon,” Hayes said.

Greg Sweetser, the executive director of Ski Maine — a statewide industry association — said Thursday he had no detailed knowledge of Lost Valley’s emerging plan but saw positive signs he could point to.

“They have continued along with their summer activities and they remain active members of the association,” Sweetser said. He said Hayes had also continued with his role as secretary for Ski Maine’s board of directors.

Hayes suggested a group that would be known as Friends of Lost Valley was forming, and they would possibly become a nonprofit organization.

Sweetser confirmed there are several ski areas in the Ski Maine association that operate as community-based, nonprofit organizations, and that model has been generally successful.

 

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