UTICA – Val Bialas Sports Center in Utica will be closing in December, the operator of the facility, Mark Ford, announced today, citing the weather as the reason for the closure.
According to Val Bialas’ website and Facebook page, a 90-day notice has been given to the city of Utica, which owns the facility, and the sports center on the Memorial Parkway will cease operations on December 18.
“We have fought mother nature over the last few years and have lost,” a notice on Val Bialas’ website reads. “During the last 2 years, we were open only 6 days with sufficient snow.”
Utica Mayor Robert Palmieri says the city plans to operate the ski center on a limited basis when the weather allows for it. He issued the following statement this afternoon:
I thank Mark Ford for operating the Val Bialas Ski Area for many years at the Parkway Recreation Center. The City has worked closely and been in constant communication with Mark to determine the best course of action as it pertains to the operation of the ski area.
Due to several factors, such as the erratic winter weather in recent years, insurance cost and regulations from the State, it was not feasible for Mark to continue to operate the ski area.
After meeting and coordinating with appropriate City personnel, the City’s goal is to operate the ski area on a limited basis when the weather conditions allow the ski area to be utilized.