Snow puts smiles on Snodeo planners

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RANGELEY – Lots of folks in the western mountains rejoiced Monday as inch after inch of snow came down, but people up in Rangeley might have been the happiest.

With the town’s annual Snodeo celebration just days away, there was finally enough snow falling to start grooming the trails.

“Oh my God, what a blessing,” Pat Allen said. Allen’s husband Clark, the Rangeley Lakes Snowmobile Club president, was out of the house all morning long.

“Clark’s up to the grooming barn as we speak,” Pat said. “Everybody is very, very happy.”

On the club’s Web site, red letters proclaim all events will take place as planned this week, except that the radar runs will be held on Haley Pond. The celebration kicks off Thursday night at 6 with a chili and chowder cookoff, followed by a casino night at 7.

Friday, a welcome-to-Snodeo party and a family-ride ease snowmobilers into the spirit and get them prepared for Saturday’s day full of radar runs, poker runs and other rides. A parade down Main Street and a fireworks display top off the weekend.

“The whole town is hurting,” Allen said of the winter’s lack of snow thus far. “They needed this bad, all this now.”

Other winter sports fanatics are also enjoying the weather. No one answered the phone at Farmington’s long-closed Titcomb Mountain Monday afternoon, but an ebullient message left on the ski mountain’s answering machine declared the lift would open this afternoon, and that the after-school program would be open for business Wednesday at 3:30.

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