Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Local News

November 12, 2009

Buzzard Hill is buzzing again

NEW PARIS — Could Mount Wawasee reclaim its status as a winter resort? Some alumni of “The Zoo” as it was called more than 20 years ago hope that whoever buys it at Saturday’s auction will do just that and turn into some sort of winter sports resort.

World champion snowboarder Shayne Pospisil said he could see Mount Wawasee becoming a snowboarding resort. “It’s steep enough,” he said Wednesday as he looked over the property. “It could be cool.”

The 24-year-old had never been to Mount Wawasee before, but heard about it through connections and decided to stop in for a visit while driving from the East Coast to Mammoth Mountain in California, where he will be attending the premiere of a movie he’s in, “Hot Laps.” He and his dad Bill, originally from the Rensselaer area, toured the old lodge and hill and talked about the land’s possibilities as a snowboarding resort.

“This place could be awesome if they got it up and running,” Pospisil said.

What he looks for in a ride is unique terrain. “This is definitely something different,” he said, adding that a lot could be done with the property.

Pospisil has been to smaller snowboarding areas, including Mountain Creek in his home state of New Jersey.

On Mount Wawasee, the champion of this year’s Red Bull Snowscrapers and Oakley Arctic Challenge — Highest Air contests said he could see 20 to 30 different rails, a half-pipe near the north slope and a big jump, plus some other features.

“It doesn’t have to be crazy,” he said.

And it wouldn’t be a stretch to have bigger events, like a Red Bull competition, on the property, he said.

If the new owner does turn it into a snowboarding park, Pospisil said, he and at least a couple of other snowboarding friends — Louis Vito, who recently competed on “Dancing with the Stars,” and Danny Davis — would even give demonstrations and workshops.

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