Photo Credit: Snowcatridge.com
Coming soon to Central Florida: Snowcat Ridge!
Pasco County Board of Commissioners approved a permit for a snow amusement park to be built in a rural area of Dade City, just north of Tampa. The park will be located right next to TreeHoppers Aerial Adventure Park, close to Scream-A-Geddon, the annual Halloween horror theme park. Other nearby cities are Lakeland, Orlando and Zephyrhills, FL.
The park’s goal is to stay open for 120 days of the year depending on the weather. The temperatures must stay below 80 degrees in order for the park to be open (since it will feature real snow).
The snow park will feature snow tubing, snow play and Alpine Village. The 400-foot-long, 60-foot-tall snow tubing hill will also feature a magic carpet lift which will whisk riders and their snow tubes away to the top of the hill. As previously mentioned real snow will be featured along with single, double and 6-person family tubes.
A snow play dome will be made available to customers to make snowmen or snow castles. Real snow will be inside the dome, too. For the kiddos, there will be a child-sized version of the larger, main snow hill inside the dome as well.
Visitors can enjoy refreshments and a bite to eat at the Snow Alpine Village.
Point Summit Inc., who own TreeHoppers Aerial Adventure Park on St. Joe Road in Dade City, worked with County officials to make this park construction happen. The snow park will be built right beside it.
The snow amusement park would open seasonally to offer snow-themed activities, and also would create seasonal employment for the locals.
Similar parks exist in states like Georgia and California. It would not only be a seasonal attraction, but it would also create seasonal jobs for the Bay Area as well.
The plan to make this snow park happen in Florida has been in the making for several months at this point. There have been public meetings about it, along with letters of support and objection. Opponents of the snow park argue this would be a bad idea as traffic would increase and the overall economy of the area will be affected in a negative way.
On the contrary, people that are in favor of the snow park being constructed don’t think this will cause any harm to the area, the environment or the local economy. “The proposed use will increase traffic and congestion,” said Bob Hunter, a planning consultant brought to speak on behalf of a neighbor.
Local resident and park supporter Lorne Lehman said, “Most of the developments have been at a pretty good pace. I’m pretty happy with that because it’s good to have businesses that are moving in. It does help the economy and kind of helps keep everything going around here.”
Clarke Hobby, an attorney for the owner, assured neighbors and local residents of their wish to maintain a 400-foot setback from Bellamy Brothers Boulevard. St. Joe Road will be used as the main entrance and exit. Cedar trees measuring 6-feet long will also be planted as a buffer.
“We’re not proposing any increase in density here. We are being very responsible with the lighting,” Hobby added.
Thanks to Hobby’s reassurance, the commissioners all voted in favor of building the snow park.
The park is currently under development and construction. The tentative opening date for the park is November 2020.