LUDLOW - Karen Lorentz , an award-winning author, writer and Shrewsbury resident, recently published the second edition of her 1996 book titled "Okemo, All Come Home." In the first edition of the book Lorentz had documented the history of Okemo Mountain ski area, dating back to it's inception in 1956. This illustrated history documents the many people and times of Okemo, featuring 364 pages with dozens of color photos and over two hundred black-and-white images.
Originally, the ski area was owned by the old mill town, with the residents owning shares and a board of directors and managers overseeing the daily operations. However, after several years and finally on the verge of bankruptcy in 1982, the ski area was purchased by Tim and Diane Mueller, who had previous experience in resort real estate management and construction.
The new book includes all the chapters from the first edition plus five new chapters, which picks up the history of the resort in the mid-90's as the Mueller's invested in new snow-making equipment, chair-lifts and additional real estate in order to expand and grow the property. Some 140 acres were purchased in the summer of 1996 to build a new base area and in 2003, the Jackson Gore Base Area and Inn was open for business. The success of the new base and lodge put Okemo into the upper-echelon of skiing destinations in the northeast.
The Mueller's also purchased the Fox Run golf course, which is now the 18-hole Okemo Golf Club. The course also offers snow-shoeing and Nordic skiing during the winter months. Then, in the early 2000's when snowboarding became the next big thing in winter sports, Okemo built snowboarding accommodations including a superpipe, quarterpipe and vertical wall. Now, some of the best young snowboards in America call Okemo their home base.
Over the last decade-and-a-half, the skiing and snowboarding numbers have increased dramatically and Okemo Mountain Resort has blossomed into a year-round, family-destination resort and a pillar of Ludlow and the surrounding area. Very worthy accomplishments that are uniquely presented in this handsome second edition book.
The author Lorentz is an accomplished writer and author, having published a number of ski-related books and feature articles including Killington, A Story Of Mountains And Men and The Great Vermont Ski Chase. To learn more about Okemo, All Come Home and the author Lorentz, visit www.karenlorentz.com.