The storm doors opened and unleashed bountiful powder on Tahoe South ski resorts. Starting Nov. 27, weather patterns dropped more than 100 inches of snow in less than two weeks above 7,000 feet allowing resorts to open more terrain before the holidays. www.tahoesouth.com

Kirkwood Mountain Resort has 1,000 acres accessible with the entire front side of the mountain open; Sierra-at-Tahoe Resort opened West Bowl on Dec. 6, and skiers/riders can now explore the Nevada side of Heavenly Mountain Resort. The California Base Lodge at Heavenly is expected to open Wednesday, Dec. 11.

“Tis the season to be jolly, especially with the season off to a memorable start,” said Carol Chaplin, president and CEO of the Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority. “There’s still time to ask Santa for a winter getaway before 2019 disappears.”

Last minute accommodations for the holidays are still available but fleeting, to secure a visit go to www.tahoesouth.com/deals. Tahoe South launched a free interactive trip planning app complete with navigation, tailored notifications, tours, events as well as where to stay, play and dine. Downloads available for Apple and Android users: https://tahoesouth.com/app/.

HOLIDAY MAGIC: SANTA, ICE CARVING, FESTIVALS

Tahoe’s Breakfast with Santa is Dec. 14 and 21 from 9 – 11 a.m. at Fire + Ice. Admission is $10 per person and space is limited.

The Heavenly Holidays Rail Jam returns with weekly events, Dec. 14, 21 and Dec. 28 from 4 – 6 p.m. under the Gondola at the Heavenly Village.

Don your best holiday apparel for the Tahoe Santa Crawl, Dec. 21 at 7 p.m. in the Heavenly Village. Registration is $10 per cup/wristband and includes live music, drinks and food specials at all Village restaurants/bars.

Magic comes to the ice rink with Disney Characters in the Heavenly Village, every Saturday in December and daily Dec. 26 – 30 from 4 – 7 p.m. See Chase and Marshall of Paw Patrol, Dec. 26; Beauty and the Beast, Dec. 27; Anna, Elsa and Olaf of “Frozen,” Dec. 28; Snow White, Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella, Dec. 29; Woody and Buzz of “Toy Story,” Dec. 30.

Family-friendly festivities for the Heavenly Holidays Carnival continues, Dec. 26-31, featuring the Holiday Express, with two trains running throughout the day from a holiday inspired train depot located at the gigantic Christmas tree. The carnival will also feature the Tahoe South Ferris Wheel.

Other events post-Christmas include the Village Ice Sculpture Contest, Dec. 27, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.; complimentary S’mores, Dec. 26-30, at Fire + Ice at the fire pits; Winter Wonderland Photo Ops with life-size snow globes throughout the Heavenly Village, Dec. 26-31; Virtual Snowboarding, Dec. 27-30, 1 – 8 p.m. with proceeds going to the Epic Promise Foundation.

Over 70 multiplayer games, including Minecraft, Halo 4, Mario Kart and Super Smash Bros. among others, will be available at the Tahoe South Game Trailer, Dec. 27-31, 1 – 8 p.m.

Regional studio Forever Dance Nevada will perform their production of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas with a large cast of actors, singers and dancers of all ages, Dec. 29.

SAFE TRAVELS

During snowfall, a fleet of city and state snow removal vehicles work throughout the Lake Tahoe Basin to keep the roads clear and safe for travel. Caltrans has current California road conditions at www.dot.ca.gov or 1-800-427-ROAD (7623) or 916-445-7623. For road conditions in Nevada, contact the Nevada Department of Transportation at http://nvroads.com or 877-687-6237.

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