Several local elementary schools will benefit from a grant awarded by the Share Winter Foundation to Crystal Community Ski Club. The grant will help fund ski equipment and instruction, all in an effort to get kids sliding around on snow this winter.
Crystal Community Ski Club’s Nordic Rocks program was recognized by the foundation through a rigorous grant process that honors some of the best winter sports programs in the United States. Nordic Rocks connects youth with winter programming that promotes health, fitness and a lifelong passion for winter activities.
The partnership will fund skis (which do not require special boots), instruction and other program costs for several elementary schools around Crystal Mountain. Kids will be able to play with the skis and slide around on snow during their regularly scheduled recess and PE classes. CCSC instructors will work with teachers and the children on how to use the skis.
“The future of skiing is getting kids on the hills,” Steve Kermode, president of Crystal Community Ski Club, said. “This grant will allow Nordic Rocks to find children who might not otherwise be able to learn how to ski.”
Schools that will receive equipment and ski coaching include: Betsie Valley School in Thompsonville; Crystal Lake Elementary School in Benzonia; Frankfort Elementary School in Frankfort; Bear Lake Elementary School in Bear Lake; Buckley Elementary School in Buckley; and Lake Ann Elementary School in Interlochen.
“This grant will allow us to be able to teach a lot of children about the fun and benefit of skiing for many years to come,” Tim Furbacher, Nordic program director and head coach for Crystal Community Ski Club, said. “We’re able to increase the number of schools and number of kids we can reach, thanks to the generosity of Share Winter Foundation.”
In addition to the in-school Nordic Rocks activities, the grant will include bringing all the students who participated to Crystal Mountain for a half-day graduation event.
Crystal Community Ski Club is a non-profit snow sports club where youth ages 7 to 17 can learn or advance their downhill skiing, snowboarding or cross-country skiing in a fun and encouraging environment.
Share Winter typically funds selected programs for three to five years, helping partners like Crystal Mountain and Crystal Community Ski Club grow while increasing both efficiency and efficacy. This collaboration includes ongoing program monitoring, analysis, thought leadership, and strategic support.
Share Winter also will help implement best practices and industry insights, and share their collective knowledge with the winter sports industry at large.