South Burlington Kiwanis Ski Area
South Burlington, VT
1962-Likely 1967

History    ~    Historical Photos    ~    Memories    ~    Current Photos


According to "The History of South Burlington Vermont 1865-1965", put out by the South Burlington League of Women Voters, "The South Burlington Kiwanis Ski Area, located behind the Cupola Motel (now Sheraton) off Interstate 89, was opened in the winter of 1962-1963.  This ski slope, providing a 500-foot rope tow, was officially turned over to the town in ceremonies at the slope in January of 1963.  A director was appointed and a successful season was enjoyed.  Lights, donated by the South Burlington High School Key Club, have been installed."

According to the Burlington Free Press, On June 11, 1967, children playing with fire burned the rope tow shack and machinery. Vandals subsequently broke the rest of the equipment and damaged 12 of 14 flood lights. While it is not know for sure if this was the reason the area closed, current photos below show the charred remains of the tow. It is likely the area did not reopen for the 67/68 season.

Historical Photos

A view of the area in the 1960's, courtesy of the League of Women voters. Note Rte 89 in the background, and how clear the slope is. It is totally grown in today.

A photo of the burned rope tow equipment. July 4, 1967, courtesy of the Burlington Free Press, found by Betsy McDonough.


D. Fisk:
I remember skiing there, but it was before I was driving, so I don't remember exactly where it was.
I do remember falling while riding the rope, which landed on one of my boots. It was only a couple of seconds before the heat from the friction started burning my foot, which motivated me to yank my boot and ski free (the rope was quite heavy).

Gary Allen:  I snowshoe in there all winter. What remains of the lift is the fly wheel at the top of the hill a telephone pole and one rim suspended from a birch tree. The trail is filled in with dead falls and the slope that faced the highway has grown in. The base hut is non-existent. Gary Allen

M. Harding
"In the early 1960's I used to ski at a very small area in back of the Sheraton Hotel in South Burlington. It faced interstate 89 and for many years could still be easily seen from the southbound lane of the interstate. It is now quite grown in. There was a lift there.

"It was just north of the Sheraton, east of Interstate 89 and west of East Avenue in Burlington. Until quite recently it was visible from the Interstate. I believe I once read a story about it being where Billy Kidd first skied before his family moved to Stowe.

Current Photos

Gary Allen took some pictures of the remains of this really lost area. Not much to see but a few artifacts remain:

"I took these pictures of the old rope tow which burned down and the bull wheel is still on the ground next to where the shed used to protect the electric motor."

You can see the burned remnants of the old rope tow shed.

" I tried to get some of the ski trail but it has all grown in and is choked up with dead falls."
Looking up the likely old liftline.

Does anyone else have any further information? If so, email us!

Last updated: July 23, 2004

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