THE BLOG
11/21/2016 09:25 am ET Updated Nov 22, 2017

The World Cup Finds A White Thanksgiving... In Vermont

What does Killington have that you can't find at Beaver Creek, Colorado, or Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada?

Snow.

This matters because all three locations have World Cup downhill skiing events scheduled for the next couple of weekends.

Lake Louise - cancelled, for the first time in 29 years.

Beaver Creek?

Forget about it.

Beaver Creek the following week?

Forget about it.

If you want to see World Cup skiing in North America, you've got to come to Vermont, where the world's fastest female skiers from 20 countries will be racing in the International Ski Federation World Cup ski races November 26 and 27.

"Making snow is in our blood, our DNA," says Michael Joseph, a spokesman for Killington. "Snowmaking here is the heart and soul of diehard eastern skiing."

It's been decades since a northeastern resort has played host to a World Cup event.

"We've got ski racing fans from Europe who have never seen New England," Joseph says.

"We're expecting 15,000 people each day, international television crews, and NBC covering the races.

"And we've got plenty of snow."

Ever wonder how ski resorts make snow?

The recipe is simple: Add air, water, and cold, and voilà.

Okay, it's not that simple.

"We've got multiple water sources," Joseph explains, "Natural streams, snow melt, and rain. We have the huge Woodward Reservoir. We also have the second-highest elevation in the state with extra cold temperatures on top of the mountain. No drought here."

The heads of Killington's snow services have worked at the resort for 30 years and are "very well versed" at making snow in practically any conditions.

"We've got snow guns for every temperature," Joseph says. "We make the best use of every cold snap. Of course, 27 degrees is the magic number, and we've had enough snowmaking weather that we've been open since October and we hope to extend past Memorial Day."

Snow may be white, but you still have to keep things green. Killington reports "every single drop" of water they use for snowmaking.

"It's a closed loop," Joseph says. "Every drop of water that comes to Killington, stays on Killington as snow." Air can be an energy hog, he says, so Killington has installed new low-energy snow guns, reducing the environmental impact of snowmaking.

The company has also installed hydrants and snow guns on each run of the seven mountains at the resort, meaning that they don't have to pick up, transport, and position a limited number of snow guns, as in the past.

It's a free event, which means that in addition to the European World Cup fans, plenty of New Englanders and New Yorkers will make the trip to Killington this weekend.

"It's pretty amazing," Joseph says, "that we have snow and Beaver Creek and Lake Louise don't. Whoever thought that if you wanted to see snow at Thanksgiving, you have to come to Vermont?"