ELLICOTTVILLE (WKBW) It was just what the doctor ordered at the Holiday Valley Ski Resort, as Mother Nature started up the lake effect snow machine, dumping multiple inches on the slopes but also kick-starting a local ski-based economy.
"It's a wonderful day. It's like an early Christmas present," Holiday Valley VP of Operations Bonnie Koschir said.
Workers at Holiday Valley were thrilled to wake up to 4-5 inches of snow with even more expected, and temps cold enough to start making snow, and potentially open for business by next weekend.
"Absolutely, the sooner the snow and the more of it the better for business," Koschir added.
Some snowboarders just couldn't help themselves, hitting the slopes for an early run down the mountain.
"It's pretty amazing, I'm loving it," one said. "I'm happy, couldn't wait for this year," another added.
And in Ellicottville, the white stuff means cashing in for businesses like Dekdebrun's Ski Shop.
"It's a world of difference. Obviously it is a snow driven sport, and the sooner we get it, the better our business is," owner Greg Dekdebrun said.
Light flurries made the annual Ellicottville Christmas Celebration even more festive, as families packed local shops, enjoyed the decorations, and even met a reindeer.
"It's very exciting. It's the beginning of the season, putting us in the Christmas spirit," Marg O'Brien said.
"With the snowflakes falling, it's a beautiful thing, to be out and enjoy," Donna Andruszko added.
The Southern Tier is expected to receive 4-6 more inches Saturday night.