The weather may be getting colder and the days becoming shorter, but that's no excuse to hibernate.
|The new winterpark|
If your idea of festive action goes beyond tackling the shopping queues then Lemon Quay will be the place for you.
Each year thousands of people splash out on a holiday in the ski resorts of Europe to get away from the wet and grey winters, and enjoy the snow.
This year Cornwall has its own piece of the Alps action with the UK's first city centre ski slope in Lemon Quay.
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There is skiing, snowboarding, tobogganing and snow-tubing right in the centre of Truro, thanks to winter sports specialists WinterPark Cornwall.
The Winterpark team have brought an innovative 30-metre public ski and snowboard slope to Lemon Quay as the centrepiece of the 2006/2007 Truro Winter Festival.
Alongside Christmas shopping and a whole range of winter style activities, people of all ages and abilities can now enjoy a couple of hours either leaning to ski or snowboard for the first time. There will also be an adjoining alpine café to add to the Alps style atmosphere.
The Winterpark opened to the public on Saturday 25 November with the grand switching on of the Christmas lights.
Whatever the weather throws at us in Cornwall this winter, there will always be an abundance of snow on Lemon Quay thanks to the joys of science.
Snowflex provides the closest sensation to real snow and minimises the chance of injury. The slope will be open every day (except for Christmas Day) until the middle of January and a full programme of activities with 'learn to ride' sessions for new learners and improvers, film shows, big air demonstrations and skiing and snowboarding competitions will be announced in the coming weeks.
A number of highly trained, specialised ski and snowboard instructors will be on hand at all times and the slope will be patrolled to ensure the ultimate health and safety for all users.
|This could be you at Christmas!|
"I've been dreaming for over 20 years that Cornwall would eventually have its own ski slope and it's certainly long overdue," smiles Cornwall snowsport facility founder Chris O'Connell.
"Winterpark Cornwall will give regular and new skiers and snowboarders alike the chance to get out there and feel the exhilaration of the mountains either before or after they do their Christmas shopping so that should certainly make it a much more interesting experience."
This particular slope will act as an initial taster for the parent Winterpark project which will be up and running by 2007/8. Organisers hope that will be the biggest artificial snowsport facility in the world.
Essential Ski Slope and Late Night Shopping Information
Opening hours will be from 10am – 9pm daily.
Freestyling practice sessions cost £5 for children, £9 for juniors and £12 for adults for 45 minutes slope time.
Ski and snowboarding lessons cost from £8 for children, £12 for juniors and £15 for adults for 45 minutes slope time and blocks of two or three lessons can also be purchased. All equipment is included in all quoted prices.
Because of the expected demand, organisers advise early booking. Tickets can be purchased from 6 November at email@example.com or by calling 01872 262466 or 0845 0175000
Truro City Centre will be closed to traffic on Saturdays and Wednesday night late shopping, from Saturday, November 25.
A park and ride will be run from 9am to 5.30pm on Saturdays and 5pm to 9.30pm on Wednesdays, from the cattle market on Newquay Road and New County Hall on Treyew Road. Truro City Council will also run disabled park and ride from the Hendra car park, 10am until 4.30pm, on Saturdays during the run up to Christmas.
There are two positions available for qualified ski and snowboard instructors. Please contact Chris O’Connell on 07841 604077 if you are interested.