Check out [R338R, Granite Peak] in Northern Wisconsin near Wausau, if this is the winter you've decided to take the family on a weekend ski trip. Their Family Festival weekend lift and lodging package for a family of four is under $500.

The resort's Family Festival takes place Feb. 4-6 and Mar. 11-13, and lift and lodging packages are available from $489 plus tax. The package, which is good for two adults and two children, includes two nights' lodging, lift tickets for two days, and free ski or snowboard rental for the entire family. There are also horse drawn wagon rides, a brat cookout, and fireworks and bonfire Saturday night; all free.  Children must be living in the same household and be 18 or younger.

Granite Peak is big time skiing and riding for the Heartland.  The resort offers nearly 80 trails with a 700-foot vertical drop, and the Badger State's only high-speed, six-seater. It arguably offers some of the best skiing and riding found mid-continent.

It's one of the oldest ski areas in the nation having opened in the late 1930s. The base facilities include the historic Tenth Mountain Chalet, which is augmented by the 10,000-square-foot Sundance Chalet and a new outside patio area that features textured color-concrete, overhead heaters, an outdoor grill, and seating for 400.

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