DORAL, FL – A snow park in Dade City, almost 5 hours away from Miami, will open its doors from November 20 to allow Floridians to enjoy the real winter experience without leaving the state now that Thanksgiving and the winter break are approaching.
In an interview with Tampa Bay Times, Winston McDaniel, marketing manager of the park, said the opening was pushed back to the new date because of the “the unseasonably warm fall” but the machines can still function even in Florida’s weather conditions. They may do so until spring break in March.
SnowCat Ridge Alpine Snow Park is the name of the new attraction that includes a 60-foot snow-covered tubing hill, from where visitors can slide down, which is considered the centerpiece of the new park.
Riders of the hill have two hours to slide using tough rubber slides. They will return to the top via two automated conveyors known as Magic Carpet Lifts.
But this is the only place where there’s a time limit set up as the rest of the park can be enjoyed throughout the day from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. which is the schedule of most days.
Besides the snowy hill, visitors also have an Alpine Village of shops and food that offers a light show with music at night and an indoor snow space called Arctic Igloo, which has a small bunny hill for kids and a place to make snow angels or a snowman.
“There is a special formula to make it more snowy and a little bit of magic,” said Winston McDaniel. “I went to high school in Oregon and I can tell you it feels identical to snow.”
Of course, like in any other attractions park during the coronavirus pandemic, social distancing will be enforced as well as the use of face masks. Since this is a winter park, it is recommended to dress in layers, with gloves and closed-toed shoes.
“The social distancing is baked into the time slots, so we are encouraging people to select a time slot in advance,” McDaniel said.
Timed tickets start at $24.95 for two hours on on the snow tubing hill and the time should be reserved at snowcatridge.com. It should be noted that ticket prices change depending on the day of attendance.
Where: 27839 Saint Joe Road, Dade City. Hours most days at 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.