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Winter Ride – August Intro Video transcript

Transcript of Winter Ride 2021-22 Video

Gwyn: Hi everyone, I’m Gwyn. Welcome back and thank you for your interest in another season at Mt Baker. I’m hoping that everyone is healthy and doing well and we want to talk about health and wellness and keeping kids here active in the mountains this winter.

Jake: Hi everybody, Jake, Instruction Manager.

We’re here today to talk a little bit about the Winter Ride program for youth at Mt Baker. We’re excited to welcome the program back this year, and with everything going on, it’s also time for us to take our next evolution with the Winter Ride Program, and so we’re going to talk a little bit more about that.

Gwyn: The Winter Ride program has had a very long history here at Mt Baker. It’s been going on for at least 30 or 40 years, something like that, and even a lot of the people that work here now, including our general manager Mike Trowbridge, came up as part of the Winter Ride program, as well as many of the parents who bring their kids up here to the mountains. The Winter Ride program has been a very important program, not only here at the ski area, but to our community in general. We’re deeply committed to continuing to invite and host youth here at the mountain.

Over time, we’ve learned some things, and especially in this last year things have brought us to a new point where we need to adapt and evolve with what’s going on here on the mountain. Winter Ride is part of that too.

So we’re going to talk about three things that we are going to be changing up this year for Winter Ride and the reasons why. I certainly invite you if you have any questions or you want to give additional feedback, certainly contact us and we’d be happy to talk through some of those with you or with your coordinator from your program.

The Winter Ride program has traditionally been in January and February, and that has now shifted to become our true high season, so to speak here at Mt Baker. Our concern, and what I have personally seen on the mountain, is that in this peak time, when there’s hundreds of Winter Ride kids up here, it really doesn’t serve their best interest for their best possible experience to be here during such essentially crowded times.

So first of all, we’re going to be moving the Winter Ride program to March, and it’s going to be incorporated into Youth Month. We’re making March Youth Month now at Mt. Baker Ski Area. One of the other reasons we’d like to do this is because there’s been some really good things going on up here with other youth programs. Whether it’s homeschooling programs, the Indigenous Youth Program, the Vamos Program, lots of other ways that youth are coming up to the mountain and enjoying the ski area.

And now what we’d like to do is just kind of gather all of those into one month to celebrate youth here in the mountains, and bring that into a time when there’s space and there’s much better weather, and our staff can be more focused on on what’s going on with the youth and offer more diversity in the programming and the options that we have for youth.

So we will be moving it to March, four weeks in March and it will be a lesson based program. There’s lots of details which Jake and Kira will be sharing with you more later, or you can read about on the website.

The other reason that we chose to do this and shorten the program up a bit is because we also wanted to make sure that economically it was available to a more diverse population as well. We have a core four week program and then we also have options around that that you can add on if you want.

One of the new programs we’re going to be offering during Youth Month will be a program that is for ability three and above skiers or snowboarders that’s going to be more of a mountain skills and life skills session as well.

Youth will be able to go out and go to various stations around the mountain. Those stations will be based on snow science. They’ll get to learn about snow science, they’ll get to learn about the watershed and the Salish Sea, they’ll get to learn about nature, natural history and health and well being in nature and how nature contributes to human flourishing and our wellness. We’ve also been involved in some really interesting citizen science programs up here that we hope to involve the youth in, studying Snow Algae and Snow Algae as a barometer for climate. That will also be piloted this year as part of Youth Month, and more information on that will be available in a couple months or so.

Once again, we want to just make sure that we’re including as many youth as possible here on the mountain in an environment that is most conducive to their health, well-being, safety, and learning and enjoyment. These decisions have been made with a lot of input from the community and hopefully it’ll take us to a new good place.

Jake: It’ll be awesome. Yeah, looking forward to this winter.

Gwyn: Also, I will say that I recognize that it will have an impact on some of you who can only come in January and February who’ve been part of the bus programs in the past or Winter Ride in the past, and we are aware that hopefully there will be some organizations in the Community coordinating some transportation during that time, but we won’t be offering the lessons then. The lessons and our staff will be involved in the Winter Ride program during the March month.

If you have any questions let us know, all the Winter Ride coordinators are also available to answer your questions, and we look forward to seeing you soon.