Bellbrook Mountain opens downtown storefront

The people behind the hoped-for opening of a snow-tubing park in Bellbrook have opened a downtown storefront just as cold weather descends on the area.

The new storefront is at 15 W. Franklin St., Bellbrook, said Steve Kircher, a retired emergency-room physician, who with two of his brothers has formed a limited liability company to build the business.

Kircher said he is working with Bellbrook city government and he has signed a letter of intent to proceed.

However, Bellbrook City Manager Melissa Dodd said Wednesday that the city has not signed any such letter.

“It’s not an easy cut-and-dried decision. There’s a lot of our land that would be required to make this happen. It’s in a flood plain. It’s a 20-year lease agreement that he’s asking for,” Dodd said Wednesday.

In addition, two members will join city council in the new year, and they will have to weigh in on the issue.

“I think it’s just too early to give a yes or a no,” she added.

“The city has considered the offer and told us they will respond soon,” Kircher told the Dayton Daily News in an email. “I’m told it will be positive.”

He added: “We will continue to make Bellbrook Mountain the best private ski resort in the Midwest.”

Kircher’s family has owned the nearly 100-acre property — a former well field on the west side of South Main Street — for 45 years, and the family has long enjoyed the area for private recreation. He approached Bellbrook City Council with the idea in June.

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Kircher’s proposal would involve city-owned land, primarily for the site’s proposed parking lot and entrance. He has asked the city for about 14.5 acres leased for 200-space parking lot and access off Waynesville Road (South Main Street in Bellbrook).

“I may (be) open to private ski club skiing and snow boarding with a few runs and terrain park in the future,” Kircher also said. “That would require adding snow-making and a lift which I plan to do also regardless of city’s response. I have all my contractors/vendors lined up ready to go should we get a positive response. It’s the best loneliest ski resort in the country.”

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