The Antelope Butte Ski Area in the Big Horn Mountains is getting closer to reopening. The Antelope Butte Foundation is preparing to make the first down payment on the site next month.
The community ski area closed in 2004 after decades of operation. The foundation was created to re-open the area to skiers, and also as a summer recreation area and event space.
U.S. Forest Service set a September 14th deadline for inspecting the site’s manmade structures like the lodge, maintenance buildings, and ski lifts. That's also when the foundation has to make its first down payment of around $55,000.
As that deadline approaches, the group has hired its first permanent executive director Andrew Gast. He says to receive the deed the Antelope Butte Foundation has to pay the remaining $220,000 by September 14th, 2016.
"Our plan is to pay those payments way early, as early as we possibly can to get the deed, because we’re going to need a full construction season to open. So if we can secure the deed this winter, we can get to work in the summer and be open next December," says Gast.
In total, the Antelope Butte Foundation will have to shell out around $275,000. Gast says they have raised roughly $226,000 of that.