Then & Now

It’s all downhill from here at this former local ski slope.



Schussing Through the (Imported) Snow

 

For a brief moment in 1924, the winter Olympics came to Westchester. On January 13, county residents headed to Briarcliff Lodge, one of the most prominent resort hotels in the country, for an exhibition tournament featuring the U.S. Olympic ski team before they headed to Chamonix, France, for the games. Located in Briarcliff on Scarborough Road between Dalmeny Road and Sleepy Hollow Road, the Lodge was so famous that, since Westchester had yet to see snow, six train-car loads of it were imported from the Adirondacks (the first time in history this had ever been done, according to a 1924 New York Times article)—to the tune of $6,000. The star of the American Olympic’s team, Anders Haugen of Minneapolis, is seen in the photograph coming down the snowy slope. The Lodge, which was built in 1902 by Walter W. Law, a partner in the furniture and rug store W&J Sloane, provided modern conveniences for its guests, including long-distance phone service, plus unobstructed views of the Hudson. After a succession of owners, the Lodge became the site of King’s College, a liberal arts college, until the ’90s when it relocated to Manhattan. A fire in 2003 destroyed all the buildings, and today, nothing remains of the original Briarcliff Lodge. A temporary sales office was built on the property, and a few companies have looked into purchasing the site but to date the property remains more or less vacant.

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