Lake Tahoe, other Western ski resorts seek Guinness record for lessons | SierraSun.com

Lake Tahoe, other Western ski resorts seek Guinness record for lessons

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Visit http://www.skiandsnowboardmonth.org to learn more about Learn to Ski and Snowboard Month, and to follow updates on the effort to set a Guinness World Record.

ALPINE MEADOWS, Calif. — This past Friday morning, the spirit of skiing and snowboarding united snow enthusiasts from over 150 resorts in the U.S. and Canada to make their mark in history as part of January's Learn to Ski and Snowboard Month.

Their hope? To officially set the Guinness World Record for The World's Largest Ski and Snowboard Lesson.

Locally, Alpine Meadows was among Tahoe-area resorts to participate. The ski area recorded 43 newbies at its Friday morning lesson, far surpassing the 25-person requirement to qualify for participation with Guinness.

"Introducing people to how great skiing or snowboarding is, is one of the most important things to do in this industry," said Michael Reitzel, President of the California Ski Industry Association, who attended the event with his family at Alpine. "So many people instantly develop this passion; I can't wait to teach my daughter one day … but she's only six weeks old."

"There are so many benefits that people gain from learning to ski or snowboard," added Kevin Klein, Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows Director of Ski and Snowboard School. "People come back after thinking about snow, having gained confidence, they're excited to get fit and be connected with nature away from screens — the more people gain that appreciation the more they respect the outdoors."

Officials from the Guinness Book of World Records said it will take several weeks of deliberation before reaching a final verdict if the goal across the U.S. and Canada was reached — but one thing is certain, everyone with snow underfoot had a smile on their face.

"It's been about eight years since I've been out here," said Malcom Scott, a Las Vegas resident who attended Alpine's beginner lesson day. "I love to skate, surf, anything with a board. Today has been really cool, I'm here with my girlfriend and her whole family trying something new and just along for the ride."