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Lack of snow: Titletown tubing among winter recreation activities on hold

Posted at 2:29 AM, Dec 28, 2023
and last updated 2023-12-28 03:29:52-05

  • Titletown closed snow tubing on Ariens Hill
    until further notice starting Dec. 24, citing "current and forecasted warmer weather"
  • This is Northeast Wisconsin's warmest December on record
  • Total snowfall in Green Bay this season sits at 5.7 inches — 9 inches lower than a normal season to date
  • The unseasonable warmth and dryness has also affected Bay Nordic Ski Club and Bonduel Polar Bears Snowmobile Club
  • Bay Nordic's teams practice on dry land in the Green Bay area or on man-made snow at Ariens Nordic Center in Brillion
  • Bonduel Polar Bears president Tyler Rosin said the conditions could put a strain on the club financially, and make for dangerous snowmobiling conditions
  • Updates regarding re-opening Ariens Hill will be available on Titletown's website and social media channels

(The following is a transcription of the full broadcast story)

On many past December nights, Ariens Hill would be full of people tubing. But for now, it's quiet. We learned how lack of snow and warmer temperatures aren't just affecting tubing — but all recreational winter activities.

"This year is hands-down the worst," Tyler Rosin said.

"The December we're having is just horrible," Mark Ernst said. "Hopefully it turns around."

Ernst coaches skiers for Bay Nordic Ski Club. He says his athletes have to either travel to Brillion to ski on man-made snow — or stick to dry-land training at home.

"We rollerski a lot in the summer, and the kids get burned out on it a little bit," Ernst said. "The thought of going back out there and rollerskiing in the cold is not all that pleasant — but it's something we do."

This is the warmest December on record — and snowfall in Green Bay totaled only three inches so far.

As a result, Titletown had to close Ariens Hill indefinitely.

The ice skating rink remains open — barring rain.

"We don't necessarily have to have freezing cold temps in order to do some of the fun things that we have going on at Titletown," said Hannah Meyer, Titletown's marketing and digital coordinator.

Like Titletown, the Bonduel Polar Bears have their own snow grooming machine.

But the snowmobiling club's president, Rosin, says the groomer won't pay for itself if the lack of snow continues.

"The little bit of additional fundraising that we have planned this year, it might be a wash if the snow never shows," Rosin said.

Most snowmobiling trails do not have the option of making their own snow — but Titletown and some cross country skiing venues do.

But still, Ernst hopes for more snow and chillier conditions in the new year.

"Hopefully the weather will change, and we'll get something out of this season," Ernst said.

Titletown says the hill could re-open before the end of Packers season, if there are some colder temperatures so they can at least make and maintain their own snow.