Money Needed To Re-Open Ski Area

Tarver snowboards down the slope, alongside Weitz's ski tracks. (Photo Provided)
Tarver snowboards down the slope, alongside Weitz's ski tracks. (Photo Provided)

Resurrecting a 50-year-old ski area that's west of Sheridan, in the Bighorn Mountains, has become a mission for two local men.

Anthony Tarver and Mark Weitz have come together to help bring the Antelope Butte ski area back to life, after a near 10-year closure. Weitz said the ski area is a special place to him because a chance trip there when he was in graduate school in Laramie led to a job in this area.

In its heyday, he said, the ski area operated like a resort. That was right up until the family-owned business closed in 2004. The property is forest service leased, he said, so it's the lodge the Antelope Butte Foundation wants to purchase back from the forest service at fair market value. Then the restoration can start.

Tarver's equally as passionate about the place because he learned to ski there as a kid and would like his own children to have the
same opportunity.

Their task, though, is monumental, one might say, because they, along with the seven other foundation board members, need to raise about $3 million to get the place back up and running. As a start, they're hosting a fund-raiser on Saturday night, Nov. 16, at Sheridan College, called Butte-ify the Big Horns.

Tickets are $50 and $20 for students. They said the event will provide an opportunity to learn more about the project, visit with people who either enjoy or want to preserve outdoor recreation areas and go home with a special item from the auction or photo taken sitting in a chairlift.

Oh, and there will also be a limbo contest. All the money raised will go to the foundation and sponsorship tables are available by calling 751-9151.

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