Ski Butternut acquires Blandford Ski Area; upgrades planned

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GREAT BARRINGTON — Ski Butternut, one of the area's largest ski mountains, has acquired Blandford Ski Area.

Ben Denard, marketing assistant for Ski Butternut in Great Barrington, confirmed the purchase Wednesday morning.

"We're working on general renovations and maintenance," he said. "We want to be open and ready for the season."

The sale became final on Sept. 1, when Blandford Properties LLC, which is managed by Ski Butternut owner Jeffrey Murdock, purchased the resort on Second Division Road in Blandford for $269,000.

Blandford is the second local ski area Ski Butternut has acquired in recent years. On Dec. 31, 2016, Otis Ridge Properties LLC, another company managed by Murdock, acquired the struggling Otis Ridge ski area on Monterey Road, which it had rescued from foreclosure back in 2011. 
The Blandford Ski Area has 25 trails and three double chairlifts, but has struggled with starting the season the last few years. In 2015 the resort didn't open until mid-January, though in 2016, the slopes were available in late December. Owners of the Blandford Ski Area, the Springfield Ski Club, began negotiating the sale in July, MassLive has reported.
Denard said Ski Butternut is working with management at Blandford to renovate and improve the resort and invest in new equipment. On Tuesday, one of Blandford's upgrades was released, a new website skiblandford.com. The site is selling season passes at a less expensive rate than what Blandford members had purchased them for earlier, Denard noted.

"We're reaching out to all the guests, all the old members and they will be refunded," he said. "We want everyone to feel welcome here."

Kristin Palpini can be reached at kpalpini@berkshireeagle.com and @kristinpalpini on Twitter.


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