Grand Nordic kids programs
Kids in Grand County who want to enjoy the outdoors in winter and learn to cross country ski are really lucky. Programs abound for both free kids lessons as well as minimal cost lessons available for elementary school level fun. Both Granby Rec and Fraser Rec offer kids programs from the Elementary schools at a minimal cost and provide equipment for all who sign up. The East Grand Middle School and Middle Park High School both offer programs as well at minimal cost. More advanced coaching is offered on Saturday at Devils Thumb Ranch and a serious program designed for the committed athlete is offered mid-week at Snow Mountain Ranch.
FREE KIDS PROGRAMS
The YMCA/Snow Mtn Ranch Kids Nordic Ski Program
The YMCA Kids program offers ski instruction for beginners and more accomplished skiers ages 5-10, skiing games, winter nature activities, and ends with a Nordic Ski Festival the last Friday and Sunday with games and prizes for all. The program operates Jan.8 through Feb. 28 on Friday and Sunday from 1-2:30 p.m. The Friday program gives more progressive lessons and is offered through Grand Nordic. Equipment and trail pass are provided. Both Classic and skate lessons are available as well as a never-ever. option.
Call Christine Lee at YMCA Nordic Center 970-887-2152 ext 4173 for information and to register. Equipment is provided but please arrive 30 minutes early. Parents are encouraged to help.
Grand Lake Nordic Center
All Grand County kids ski free every Friday with free rentals. Call the Nordic Center at 970-627-8008 for more information.
REC DISTRICT PROGRAMS
Fraser Valley Rec District at Fraser Elementary
Fraser Valley Recreation District offers Cross Country “Striders” designed for kids K-2nd grade for after school skiing Mondays Feb. 10 – March 16 from 3:30-5:30 p.m. Students learn both classic and skating techniques through games and exercises. Transportation and equipment is provided from the FVE gymnasium. $60 In District/ $65 Out District. Cross Country “Cruisers” is designed for 3rd to 5th graders and operates on Mondays from Jan. 18-March 7 from 3:30-5:30 p.m. Kids learn both classic and skating techniques and transportation and equipment is provided at the FVE gymnasium. The program is divided into two 4-week sessions.- $40 per session. Visit http://www.fraservalleyrec.org for more information or to sign up.
Granby Rec program at Granby Elementary
Cross Country Crusin’ is offered for the first time by Granby Rec on Mondays Jan 18 – Feb 29 4:15-5:30 p.m. for 2nd through 5th graders. K-1st graders are welcome if accompanied by a parent. $50 for 7 weeks including use of nordic equipment. Coach Gretta Fosha and other fun volunteers from Grand Nordic will introduce the fundamentals of nordic skiing, increase skiing endurance, teach responsible equipment care, and encourage FUN for all. All participants need snacks, water, and to dress appropriately for the out-of-doors. Sign up by Jan. 13 by calling 970-887-3961. Parent volunteers (all abilities welcome but with their own equipment) are encouraged.
JUNIOR NORDIC PROGRAMS
Snow Mountain Ranch Junior Nordic Race Program
SMR offers a simple introduction to year-round nordic ski training and how that process is planned and executed for the serious youth skier. Led by Bill Pierce, USSA Certified and Licensed Level 100 Nordic Coach with over 30 years of coaching youth to elite programming, this program introduces young athletes to the next level of competitive nordic racing and is meant to enhance and go beyond the middle school and high school programs. Students develop goals and plans to fit a progression and be coached and developed throughout the season to meet those goals. Training focuses on being ski fit with technique work and lots of general movement and fitness training. Having good and correct equipment is important in achieving quality training. Sessions are 4:30 p.m. Wednesdays and 8:30 a.m. Fridays for 1.5-2 hours. $240 for sessions thru mid-March. Call 970-887-2152 x4173 or visit snowmountainranch.org/nordic-center for more information or to sign up.
Devil’s Thumb Junior Nordic Ski Team
The Nordic team is open to skiers ages 6-17 working on developing the basic skills of beginners to fine-tuning techniques of advanced skiers with both skate and classic skiing hoping to instill a passion for the sport within a supportive and fun team environment. Program runs Saturday 2:30 p.m. mid-December to mid-March. http://www.devilsthumbjnt.com for more information.
East Grand Middle School and Middle Park High School teams
Middle school participants are provided equipment but high schoolers are expected to have their own equipment. MPHS head coach is Travis Fuqua with assistant coach Sarai Reed. EGMS coaches include Rachael Kindsvatter, Jon Kuhns, Lydia Castiello and Cat Barker and they can be reached at email@example.com. The teams practice almost nightly at SMR. They compete at Frisco on Saturday, Dec. 9 and Minturn next weekend. Ski strong!
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The Mustangs cross country team trudged through a muddy 5K Saturday morning during the West Grand Invitational, a race that slowed times but sent the fun factor through the roof for many of its competitors.