Norm Nicholls: Ski, or shop, til you drop this week | SierraSun.com

Norm Nicholls: Ski, or shop, til you drop this week

Norm Nicholls

Merry Christmas everyone and a special welcome to our visitors. We certainly hope you enjoy your vacation up here and thanks for dropping a few bucks into our economy! When I was writing this column a couple of weeks ago, the temperatures had finally turned cold enough to turn on the snow making machines at the ski areas but the amount of snow we would have for the Christmas holidays was questionable.At this writing it looks like more snow everyday this week with the possibility of 2 to 3 feet of new snow by the time this column is printed. This will definitely help the conditions and increase the skiable terrain considerably. So for all you skiers and snowboarders … enjoy! For you non-skiers … shop!It is not unusual at all to have snow over the Christmas holidays … sometimes too much.I can remember in 1979 when we had 16 or so family members come up for Christmas. They all arrived on Saturday, just hours ahead of a cold front. By Sunday morning, there was already a foot of snow on the ground (in Glenshire!), and it was snowing heavily. By Monday morning (Christmas Eve) an additional 2 to 3 feet of snow had fallen and I-80 was closed due to heavy snow and zero visibility. By that afternoon some of our relatives were getting extremely nervous about getting off the mountain on Christmas Day to be at their jobs on the 26th.We decided to have Christmas Dinner and gift opening Christmas Eve and an early brunch on Christmas morning so everyone could make their getaway if the freeway reopened.By Christmas morning another foot of snow had fallen and the highway remained closed. The forecast was for clearing by 3 p.m. that afternoon. I urged my three brothers-in-law to sit tight and to plan on getting out in the evening or early the following morning.My brother in-law who lives in Lincoln decided he wanted to get on the road and wait for the freeway to open. He got to within 1/2 mile of the old bug station by 10 a.m. in the morning and began his vigil. The freeway did not open until 5 p.m. and he and his family arrived home four hours later.My brother in-law from Sacramento decided to be adventurous and decided to head up 89N and try to cross over Hwy 49 via Downieville. To make a long story short, Highway 49 was closed so he drove all the way to Quincy (with chains on his Mercedes) only to find that Highway 70 was closed. However it did open by 4 p.m. and he and his family made it home by 8p.m. that night … some 10 hours after departing.The last brother in-law and his family stayed at our house until after the freeway opened. He left around 5 p.m. and was home in Marysville by 10 p.m. The next morning the freeway was open, no chains, sun was shining! Moral of the story: sometimes it is better to sit back, relax, and let Mother Nature have her way. Epilogue: The families have not been here for Christmas since … we go to the valley!Thanks very much. A big thank you to Truckee Community Christmas, the many organizations and businesses who contributed to Toys for Tots, Project MANA, and other groups and clubs who gave of themselves to support needy families in our area. This is a very special community and our citizens particularly shine during this time of year!Mark your calendar: On Sunday, Jan. 11, the Truckee High School senior parents and friends are hosting a Project Graduation Wine and Beer Tasting at the Lodge at Lahontan from 5 to 8 p.m. Attendees will soak up wine and beer tastings and food samplings from the areas best restaurants and caterers, while enjoying the classic winter setting generously donated by Lahontan. There will also be entertainment, a silent auction, and a great raffle.Tickets are $25 in advance (can be purchased at Florians Fine Wines andamp; Specialty Foods and The Pour House) or $30 at the door. Call 559-5330 for more information.Congratulations to Anna Grahn Nilsson. She is this years winner of our drawing. Annas name was drawn from the over 300 names of readers who played our Question of the Week game in 2008. We will donate $200 in her name to the Humane Society of Truckee and $300 to the Glenshire Elementary School PTO. Last weeks question: An unprecedented 30 players correctly answered last weeks question. Sizzler was the name of the original restaurant at the site where Panda Express is now located. Our early bird winner was Lynn Saunders followed by Elizabeth Wainscoat, Mark Brown, Marcy Thompson, Eileen Lyon, Pete Kolp, Steve Ascher, Heidi Martin, Bob Moore, Dan Warren, Sheila Reever, Ginny Pomroy, Anna Grahn Nilsson, Kurt Hyatt, Ron Rettig, Mary De Lisle, Irene Schwinning, Lisa Shaffer, Susannah Redman, Jerry Blakeley, Pat Northrop, Barbara York, Ray Craig, Mavis Bowes, Larry Ford, Kelly Wulff, Marissa Castillo, Bill Mullins, Corine Harvey and Lori Tucker.

Norm and Alan Nicholls of the Nicholls Real Estate Group are affiliated with Dickson Realty at 11500 Donner Pass Road.