Ski programs available for area youth

Special to the Sun

For almost 30 years the Truckee-Donner Recreation andamp; Park District has offered affordable, quality ski programs for the youth of Truckee. andamp;#8220;Skiing and snowboarding is a birthright for Truckee kids,andamp;#8221; says Dan Oandamp;#8217;Gorman, recreation superintendent at the TDRPD. andamp;#8220;And it should not have to break the bank to participate.andamp;#8221; Thanks in large part to money raised through the Truckee Ski Swap, as well as sponsorships from local businesses and service clubs, the TDRPD is able to keep the programs affordable for all. This year there are four programs that allow local youth the chance to learn and enjoy skiing and snowboarding.Buddy Werner Development ProgramFor ages 5 through 14, the Buddy Werner Ski Program is now in its 29th year in Truckee. It is open to beginning skiers to the young ripper. Alumni include two-time Olympian Stacey Cook and numerous Far West national competitors. This program is designed for the beginning skier to the entry-level competitor. Ski development and fun are stressed. The program is perfect for young skiers wanting to learn how to ski race, yet still participate in other activities on weekends such as basketball, dance, karate or ice skating. The program consists of 14 Sundays at Soda Springs, plus ski-away days at Sugar Bowl, Alpine Meadows and Homewood. New this year are three ski days on TTUSD minimum-day Wednesdays. The program includes five intrasquad races. Fees include a season pass to Soda Springs, all ski-away days, team sweatshirt and awards. The program meets on Sundays from 9:30 a.m.-2 p.m. from Dec. 4 through March 25. Cost is $230.Tahoe Ski League ProgramThe Tahoe League is a developmental alpine ski race league for children ages 7 to 17. The League consists of approximately 15 teams representing ski areas and private clubs in the Lake Tahoe-Truckee area. Teams practice throughout the winter and six races are conducted each season. In each race, athletes compete against others in the following age and gender groups: 7/8, 9/10, 11/12, 13/14 and 15-18. The Truckee team has 26 practice dates as well as the six races. Practices are on Saturdays and Sundays. There are ski-away days to Sugar Bowl, Alpine and Homewood as well as practices on minimum-day Wednesdays. Cost is $275 and includes season pass and ski-away days. There is an additional $28 fee for Tahoe League races.Snowboard Development TeamThe Snowboard Development Team is for children ages 8 to 16. Boarders train in slalom, freeriding and halfpipe. The program meets on Sundays from Jan. 1 through March 25 from 9:30 a.m.-2 p.m. at Soda Springs. There are the same ski-away days as the other programs. Cost is $250 and includes season pass, ski-away days, sweatshirt and awards.SkiDuck Ski and Snowboard programThe TDRPD is partnering with SkiDuck, a nationwide nonprofit whose mission is to get children outdoors and onto skis or a board. The Wednesday program meets on minimum days and is open to everybody ages 5 to 12. The full program includes minimum days plus Sunday, and is open to those who meet income qualifications. Lift tickets, lessons, equipment and clothing as needed, plus transportation, will be provided. Lessons and skiing are at Squaw Valley USA. Cost for the season is only $15. Students who qualify for free for reduced lunch through TTUSD may enroll in the full program. Space is available on a first-come first-served basis.For more information on any of these local programs, call the TDRPD at 582-7720.

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