Time remains to sign up for Buddy Werner Ski and Snowboard Program | SierraSun.com

Time remains to sign up for Buddy Werner Ski and Snowboard Program

Sylas WrightSierra Sun

Its like Little League only skiing. And for those who havent already signed up their young ones, the Truckee-Donner Recreation andamp; Park District is taking registration until Jan. 11 for its 2009 Buddy Werner race season.The one thing that every kid will get out of it is that they will become confident skiers and snowboarders for the rest of their lives, said Dan OGorman, program coordinator for the TDRPDs Buddy Werner program. It introduces them to the sport, which should be a birthright in this area.Named after the late Buddy Werner, an American alpine ski racer in the 1950s and 60s, the youth ski and snowboard program is similar to Little League or Pop Warner in that it includes non-affiliated branches nationwide.In Truckee, OGorman said the TDRPDs Buddy Werner league serves as a feeder program to the Tahoe Ski League and, further into a racers development, Far West Skiing. It accommodates skiers and snowboarders of all abilities from ages 5 to 17. The only experience required is that they do need to know how to get off a chairlift, OGorman said.The young skiers and boarders receive season passes to Soda Springs, where the majority of the 13 practices or freeski days are held, as well as the five scheduled races. Cost is $215.One of the main advantages of our program is the price, OGorman said, adding that the league members also receive two freeski days at Sugar Bowl and one day at Homewood, Alpine Meadows and Tahoe Donner.

The first race is scheduled for Jan. 19 at Soda Springs, and the race season culminates with the Buddy Werner Invitational at a site to be determined on March 29. A parents race, barbecue and awards ceremony officially signals the end of the season on April 5.OGorman said while the TDRPDs Buddy Werner program includes two professional coaches, parent-volunteers make up a bulk of the coaching staff.It makes it more of a family affair, he said.