Anyone who thinks Veterans Memorial Recreation Ski Area in Franklin doesn’t have a lot to offer, with only 220 vertical feet of elevation, is missing the point.

This little ski area offers free skiing thanks to sponsorships from local businesses that pay for the lift attendants and the gas to run the rope tow and t-bar.

That’s not a misprint: It’s FREE. 

“It’s a real throwback to the 1960s when families like mine didn’t have the money to go to bigger ski areas,” said Kathy Fuller, whose father was one of the founding members of the ski area. “It’s going back to an age when you encouraged families to play together and spend time together.”

The ski area hosts a lot of beginners, young children and families who want to get out for a few hours, or don’t have hundreds of dollars to spend on a single day of skiing.

Even equipment isn’t an issue if you can’t afford it. Franklin Outing Club members can use any of the ski area’s equipment at no charge.

“It’s just a happy place with a lot of families,” Fuller said. “You feel welcome.”

Since it isn’t able to make snow, its season depends on the weather. It’s open for skiing on Thursday nights, Saturdays and Sundays.