Fred Zedeck's annual rites of winter begin Oct. 17 at the newly renovated Capital City Mall in Harrisburg's western suburbs.

The event opens at 4 p.m. Friday Oct. 17, runs through the weekend, and wraps up at 6 p.m. Sunday Oct. 19.

It's the first of his three small shows across Pennsylvania, all based in malls, all offering a look at ski and snowboarding equipment and area resorts.

"They're small shows because the economy is taking a toll. Ski areas are hurting. There's almost a sense of doom about the price of gasoline and the high price of airline tickets," Zedeck said.

He's combating the economic conditions with aggressive advertising.

"We're doing eight-page full-color inserts; half a million of them are being inserted into regional papers advertising the shows. We've got 3,300 TV spots for the three Pennsylvania shows, with a little picture-in-picture of the '09 Jeeps," he said.

Next on the calendar is the National Ski & Snowboard Expo in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, Penn., Oct. 24-26 at the newly renovated Wyoming Mall.

The first two shows are both sponsored by Jeep/Chrysler.

The National Ski & Snowboard Expo in Philadelphia, Oct. 31 to Nov. 2 at the Plymouth Meeting Mall, finishes the run of Pennsylvania expos. The mall, located in Philadelphia's Main Line suburbs, has just undergone a million-dollar renovation.

The Philadelphia show is sponsored by the Eastern Pennsylvania Ski Council, a coalition of 36 member clubs, as well as Jeep/Chrysler.

The Philadelphia show features a ski and snowboard swap, in addition to equipment, resorts and cars. For more information, visit the National Ski & Snowboard Expo Web site.

Zedeck's traveling road show leaves Pennsylvania for the nation's capital, combining Nov. 7-9 with the Northern Virginia/DC Travel Show.