It’s been a tough winter for skiing, I think we can all admit that. Finding a skiable balance between warm, rainy days, and piercing, icy blasts can be…difficult. Two weeks ago, the Brewster Pierce Memorial School Ski Cubs program was forced to take yet another weeklong hiatus because of the impromptu ice rink that enveloped our terrain. That meant two things this past Friday: 1-I was determined to run Ski Cubs, and 2-The third and 4th graders’ excitement had been building for three whole weeks, and that’s a LOT of excitement! Kelly Spreen, the BPMS gym teacher who is helping coordinate the program, said that her students had been asking almost incessantly about when they would be able to ski again.
When I arrived at BPMS on Friday morning I was very happy to see white stuff on the ground, a bright blue cloudless sky, and Brett Lindemuth zipping around the playground on his snowmobile, laying some fresh corduroy for our skiers.
The focus of the day was learning how to balance on skis. With a lot of beginner skiers it takes some time, the shuffle step, and a lot of falling to figure out how to best stay upright while perched atop two skinny sticks. By having the kids “scooter around” with only one ski on it forces them to simultaneously work on balance and glide, rather than taking small steps to move forward. Aside from learning new skills this activity is a lot of fun, especially when it comes to playing a fast paced game of tag. Judging from the hoots and howls and the massive amount of snow that was churned up and sprayed into the air, this practice was successfully veiled as “pure fun”, and helped use some of that pent up excitement.
This Friday we are hoping to get out for a real cross country ski tour, venturing beyond the bounds of the school yard. The fields, forests, and barns that surround Brewster Pierce Memorial School remind me of my small elementary school in East Randolph where we used to put on our old ski boots, step into some three pin bindings and explore the hills and fields. Those days made for some of the best memories, the kind of memories I hope some of these kids will carry with them too. So here’s hoping for another perfect day of skiing with the kids at BPMS.