- If you like winter sports, do we have some good news for you! Not only is it bone chillingly cold out, but this weekend is the 2nd annual Winter Jam in Central Park. They are making snow for Saturday's event (from noon until 4). Activities include cross country skiing, snowshoeing, ice sculpting, an amateur rail jam, and free hot chocolate. Snowmaking began on Monday and continues through today. When done, there will be 2 feet of snow for Saturday.

- Tomorrow in Union Square, top-ranked snowboarders will be competing in New York City's first snowboard event. The Union Square Street Sessions start tomorrow afternoon at 3 with events until 9 pm. We'll have more information and pictures tomorrow, but we're told that there will be 10 tons of snow for the event.

2007_02_sarodbook.jpg - A-Rod was in town yesterday with a vicious tan to promote his new children's book, Out of the Ballpark. We're not sure if the book deals with being booed by fans and being a major disappointment, but the description on Amazon makes it sound like the story of A-Rod's time with the Yankees: "It's the story of a boy named Alex who knows what it's like to swing at a wild pitch or have a ball bounce right between his legs."

- Mets fans should be happy to hear that Pedro Martinez is working hard to be in shape for the coming baseball season. With two years left on his contract with the Mets, the Daily News reports that Pedro is "robust these days, with defined biceps popping out of a sleeveless gray T-shirt, a cut upper torso." Thanks for the visual! Unfortunately, Pedro and his buff body will be out for at least three months of the season. Speaking of three months, Dave Williams just had surgery for a herniated disc in his neck and won't be available until around May.

- Could Mark Messier be coming back to The Garden? If he gets what he wants, The Captain will be retuning as a GM for the Rangers. The former Rangers star told the Edmonton Sun that "New York fits best for me and my family. And this is what I know best and what I love the most." While Messier can probably do no wrong in the eyes of Rangers fans, hiring someone with no front office experience seems like a recipe for disaster. But no, that never happens in The Garden.

Photo of snowmaking in Central Park by AP/Tina Fineberg