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Successful opening weekend at Montage Mountain

Ski resorts are ready for a busy couple of weeks. Last week's snow helped set the mood for the beginning of the season.

LACKAWANNA COUNTY, Pa. — Matthew Walsh and Teresa Kalinay don't just work at Montage Mountain; they work on Montage Mountain. It's their favorite job requirement as members of the marketing team.

"Since we have to go grab content every day to show you guys what's going on. We are out on the slopes every single day," Kalinay said.

"It is pretty cool," Walsh said.

Mother Nature provided them with some good content for their opening day, which turned out to be the resort's best one yet.

"Seeing snow fly — that's the best form of marketing we can get. It gets people thinking about winter and doing something outside. So, we're happy to see that any time we can get it," said Jeff Slivinski, the resort's marketing director.

But they still need help from the snow guns.

"The natural snow helps us, but we've got to put a base down. So, we've got the snowmaking team out there. We've got about ten trails open, but we'll make snow over the next three or four weeks that's going to get us fully open 100%," Slivinski said.

"There's a lot of snow to make. We make snow right up into February. February, if it's good, we'll lay off the snowmaking for a little while. If we still need snow, we'll make snow right into March," said Mark Siekierka, the ski school director at Montage.

Siekierka is ready to spend another season introducing people to the sport.

"Seeing the little kids come out and they're all topsy-turvy, and their balance isn't so great. And then, at the end of the lesson, they're rip-roaring down the hill and making some turns and stopping. That's very rewarding. Seeing adults though as well — some people have a lot of fear, and they think they can't do it, not a lot of confidence, and you build confidence in that lesson, and you see the look of fear just turns to a big smile. And then you know you got it."

The slopes on Montage Mountain are open every day from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

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