According to an article published Thursday in the Frederick-based Herald-Mail newspaper, the planned sale of Whitetail Resort to the Mercersburg General Purpose Authority (MGPA) has been aborted, after the county was unable to sell $42 million worth of bonds to fund the purchase. The Pennsylvania resort has now been placed on the auction block, and most of its year-round employees have been laid off.
Whitetail has been hit by back-to-back warm winters after opening to a strong start eight years ago. While older resorts in the region have been able to weather the mild winters, Whitetail has struggled, and its current ownership began investigating ways to sell the resort last year. Several attempts were made to sell the resort to counties in Pennsylvania, including Daughin County and Northumberland County, but these deals fell through after competing ski resorts complained the sale would result in unfair competition. This spring, Whitetail entered negotiations with the MGPA to sell the resort and an upcoming golf course currently under development.
If a buyer is not found soon, the resort may be unable to open for the 1999/2000 winter season. In the meantime, the resort remains open for fly fishing and mountain biking.
According to the Herald-Mail, the bulk of Whitetail’s year-round employees have been laid off, as of last Wednesday. Whitetail normally employs around 40 year-round employees, and hires up to 800 seasonal employees during the winter season.
Skier visits this past season were 140,000, up from 100,000 during the mild 1997/98 season. Whitetail earned $1.2 million on gross revenues of $7 million the past season.
DCSki will continue to follow this developing story.
M. Scott Smith is the founder and Editor of DCSki. Scott loves outdoor activities such as camping, hiking, kayaking, skiing, and mountain biking. He is an avid photographer and writer.
There are no reader comments on this article yet.