Floridians sliding down a snow-covered hill or making snowmen in a chilly play area? That’s about to become reality.
A Dade City property that had been the site of haunted houses for Scream-A-Geddon has been turned into a snow park that will open Nov. 20.
Snowcat Ridge features a 60-foot snow-covered tubing hill. The centerpiece of the park will give riders two hours to slide using tough rubber slides. They will return to the top via two automated conveyors known as Magic Carpet Lifts.
There’s also 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.
This won’t be the crushed ice you’ll find at city parks that have snow play days at Christmastime.
“There is a special formula to make it more snowy and a little bit of magic,” said Winston McDaniel, marketing manager for SnowCat Ridge. “I went to high school in Oregon and I can tell you it feels identical to snow.”
The opening was pushed back to Nov. 20 because of the unseasonably warm fall, McDaniel said, but their machines can combat Florida’s balmy weather to keep it snowing on the hill even in the 80s. The organization hopes to keep the flurries flying until spring break in March.
Though there is a two-hour limit to play on the hill, there is no time limit for the rest of the park, which will have an Alpine Village of shops and food. At night, there’s a light show set to music.
Timed tickets start at $24.95, and you have to reserve your time at snowcatridge.com.
Visitors are encouraged to dress in layers, with gloves and closed-toed shoes.
Because of the coronavirus pandemic, managers will be enforcing social distancing, and face masks are required in all the attractions.
“Scream-A-Geddon went off very well and we learned a lot about crowd management. I’m glad we had that experience before SnowCat,” McDaniel said. “The social distancing is baked into the time slots, so we are encouraging people to select a time slot in advance.”
If you go
Snowcat Ridge: The new snow park opens to the public on Nov. 20. Hours most days are 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Where: 27839 Saint Joe Road, Dade City. Hours most days at 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Tickets: Timed tickets start at $24.95 for two hours on on the snow tubing hill. Ticket prices change depending on the day you go. Reserve your time at snowcatridge.com.