A Brave Ski Mom Interview with the Somerset Valley Middle School Skiers from Hartland, Maine. All questions answered by the kids!
Sugarloaf, Maine. Nothing compares.
Why is Sugarloaf your favorite?
It’s the best skiing east of the Rockies. Sugarloaf is very family friendly, and has the best snow in Maine. There are awesome terrain parks, and the best glade skiing by far. It has a place to eat on the slope!
Sugarloaf is a unique place and it’s close to home. It’s a northern facing mountain meaning awesome backside skiing in the sun (we ski in tee-shirts).
What else makes Sugarloaf a great place for families?
Besides the best skiing there is the Anti-Gravity Center which consists of climbing walls, Olympic trampolines, a skate park, and a gym/work out area. There is also a fitness club with an indoor pool, outdoor hot tubs and indoor hot tubs. Plus these are available at a great rate for families when the weather isn’t good!
What would make Sugarloaf even better?
They could have better prices for adults. And newer lifts. But we don’t want anything big that would attract tourists. (Note from Brave Ski Mom: Sounds like a bunch of middle-schoolers!)
Any “secrets” you’re willing to share?
Kings Landing has the best snow on the west side of the mountain and Ripsaw has the best snow on the east side. To see a resort map, click here.
What advice would you give other families before they come to Sugarloaf?
Be prepared for variable weather conditions and don’t bite off more than you can chew.
Where do you like to eat at Sugarloaf?
The Bag & Kettle and Geppeto’s.
Where do you like to stay?
At our friend’s condo 10 feet from a lift. But there are lots of other places to stay at Sugarloaf. For more information on lodging, click here.
What makes Sugarloaf unique?
This is the closest to Western skiing that you will find on the East coast. This is the tallest skiing mountain in New England.
What is your favorite memory of Sugarloaf?
Being with our friends and family and teaching them the skills.
How old where you when you started skiing?
Breac 1.5; MollyMac 1; Lauren 9; Sophia 8; Kailey 10; Abby 5; Emily 2; Bryce 11; Braden 7; Ryan 11; Jonny 6; Gavin 12; Coach Nancy 10; Mrs. Bowman 44; and Ethan 8
Any advice for other kids or parents?
Start skiing early!
What is your favorite thing about family skiing?
From the Boys: Ditching our family is fun.
From the Girls: Taking our boots off at the end of the day and socializing with our friends!
We are the SVMS Skiers and we are #1! Like us at our Facebook page!
And now, a question for your coach. Coach Nancy, you helped start this team and get it running this winter. Do you have any words of wisdom for other parents or coaches?
Never assume that something that seems second nature to one person will be the same for all. Since I have skiers of every ability, I have overlooked many of the basics, such as appropriate clothing. Now that we’re up and running, we have meetings with students and parents to go over issues like this and try to help first-time skiers learn about the sport.
I never in my mind could fathom that this venture would turn into such an adventure! I love these kids and they are experiencing opportunities that they would never have expected. Their smiles have made all the hard work worth it!
Finally, I have to thank school district grant writers Don McDougal and Jim Dyer for their help. Because of them, the district has been able to offer these kids opportunities they would never have had. Thank you.
The Brave Ski Mom Adds…
Thank you so much Coach Nancy and the Somerset Valley Middle School Skiers of Hartland, Maine!
More About The SVMS Skiers
The SVMS Skiers are a brand new ski team, in their first season. Skiers come from Somerset Valley Middle School, Sebasticook Valley Middle School, Etna Dixmont Middle School and Nokomis High School. At this time, they are a learning team and do not compete. Instead their goal is to be “outside off the couch” challenging themselves to become better skiers.
The SVMS Skiers began when three boys (Braden, Breac and Jonny) were riding a lift at Sugarloaf last season and decided their school needed a ski team. The local school district, with supplemental wellness grants, funds the team. Any student at these schools is welcome to participate and the team tries to provide clothing and gear for those who need it. Students continue to join and the numbers are growing!
More About Sugarloaf
So far this season, the SVMS skiers have made eight trips to Sugarloaf. Although there is a local ski hill in nearby Pittsfield, there hasn’t been enough snow to open it yet this season. Coach Nancy Monteyro tells me that the hospitality at Sugarloaf has been amazing. The mountain helped introduce many of these kids to skiing through their “First Time Skier Special” (rental, ticket and 2 1/2 hour lesson).
Coach Nancy adds, “Sugarloaf has been incredibly hospitable towards us and have made ski enthusiasts out of all my first time skiers! They have a great staff and are to be commended for their mountain skills.”
As you can tell the SVMS Skiers LOVE Sugarloaf! And why not? With 1,056 skiable acres, 153 trails and glades, and 2,820 vertical feet, Sugarloaf is the big mountain of the East Coast. Sugarloaf also has 90 km of groomed cross-country ski trail, as well as access to the Maine Huts and Trails 48 k trail system and three backcountry huts. Tubing, ice skating and snowshoeing are just some of the other fun family activities at Sugarloaf. And that’s just in winter!
For more information on all things Sugarloaf, including lift tickets and ski school, please visit Sugarloaf.com.
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