McLean, VA (December 8, 2008) — Twelve industry resort associations representing 22 states are teaming with five national associations to promote January 2009 as Learn a Snow Sport Month. Resorts are offering learning packages for prospective snow sports participants or current participants wanting to hone their skills. Organizers include: Ski Utah, Pennsylvania Ski Areas Association, Midwest Ski Areas Association, Colorado Ski Country, USA, Ski Areas of New York, Ski Maine, Ski New Hampshire, Michigan Ski Industries Association, Inland Ski Areas Association, Ski Oregon, Pacific Northwest Ski Areas Association, Ski Vermont, and Ski New Mexico. New Jersey is participating via Mountain Creek Resort. Links to learning programs are posted by state on www.winterfeelsgood.com. Offers and fees, where they apply, vary according to the location.
SnowSports Industries America (SIA), Professional Ski Instructors of America (PSIA), the American Association of Snowboard Instructors (AASI), National Ski Areas Association (NSAA), and Cross Country Ski Areas Association (CCSAA) are collaborating on a national level. The effort is in response to the Model for Growth initiative spearheaded by NSAA.
Industry media supporting the program thus far includes SKI, SKIING, SkiNet, Ski Press, Powder, Snowboarder, Freeskier, Ski Area Management and Liftopia.com. These have agreed to place information on their Web sites and, in most cases, to provide a full page ad gratis in their December and/or January issues. Messaging in trade media will promote “Bring a Friend” since readers and viewers already are snow sports enthusiasts. PSIA-AASI’s agency Cultivator Advertising and Design developed the ads as an industry service.
Resorts and other venues participating in the outreach initiative will offer special free or specially priced packages for children and adults who want to learn snow sports skills from bone fide instructors. Retailers are encouraged to work with the resort associations in their respective state to promote collaborate locally with the initiative.
Most Learn a Snow Sport packages for alpine skiing, snowboarding and cross country skiing include rentals, lifts and lessons provided by professionally-trained instructors at resorts and Nordic centers. On January 10, 2009, the 14th annual Winter Trails, offers free snowshoeing and/or cross country skiing for those new to snow sports. Winter Trails is organized by SnowSports Industries America through a partnership with the American Hiking Society (AHS) and the Cross Country Ski Areas Association (CCSAA).
Learn a Snow Sport Month organizers want to convey the message that participating in snow sports is a great way for children and adults to stay active outdoors in the winter and to make learning more affordable. The goals for this national effort are to break down the barriers to participation, enable people to learn best practices’ from professionals at a reasonable cost or for free, showcase the health and wellness benefits of snow sports and convey how much fun snow sports are for children and adults of all ages.