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Tamarack opens despite bankruptcy

The Tamarack Express hasn't operated since 2009. Courtesy of Tamarack

This week, a U.S. Bankruptcy judge gave Idaho's Tamarack Ski Resort permission to open for this winter season, despite the ski area's financial woes. Opening day is slated for Dec. 20. The bankrupt ski area hasn't been open since the spring of 2009.

Judge Terry Myers made the decision in a Boise courtroom late Monday. Tamarack Municipal Association, a homeowners association that sublets the land from Tamarack, plans to open the ski area for 15 weeks this season, Thursdays through Sundays, with the hopes of bringing in some $1.5 million in business and generating around 65 jobs.

"This means we're opening Dec. 20, 9 a.m. Grab your skis and boards," Tim Flaherty, director of the Tamarack Municipal Association, told The Associated Press. "A lot of people said, 'It can't be done.' We did it."

Tamarack first opened in 2004 as one of North America's newest ski areas. By 2008, after the resort failed to make payments on its $300 million loan to its main creditor, Credit Suisse, the ski area's majority owners filed for bankruptcy.

Last April, a court changed Tamarack's bankruptcy condition from Chapter 7 (liquidation) to Chapter 11 (reorganization). But this week, the lawyers for Credit Suisse tried to get the court to move the ski area back to liquidation. Proceedings for that decision are expected to take place later this week.