One of the many reasons Brett and I love the Bay Area is the fact we are so close to the snow in Tahoe. Every season we take the opportunity to snowboard. This year, we decided our son was old enough to learn to ski and to participate in a program run by the City of Reno at Sky Tavern Ski Resort. It is the longest running volunteer ski resort in the country having been operating for over 60 years! While another parent taught our son to ski, Brett taught other 4 – 7 year olds to ski and I taught teenagers how to snowboard.
Over the past 64 years, Sky Tavern has helped over 100,000 children, adults and special needs individuals get outdoors and enjoy snow sports. Let’s face it, skiing is an expensive sport. However, through the efforts of Sky Tavern and it’s volunteers 2200 members were able to participate in the program this year, many receiving partial or full scholarships so that no one was turned away because they couldn’t afford to pay.
It was amazing to be part of this wonderful program. Every weekend for the past 6 weeks, Brett, Bryce and I have driven up to Reno so we could participate. I am proud to say, I gave over 60 kids snowboarding lessons, Brett taught numerous 4 to 7 year olds how to ski and our son Bryce is now comfortably skiing on green and blue runs while making excellent S turns.
Sky Tavern is supported by the City of Reno, Mount Rose Ski Resort and many volunteers. If you are interested in being part of the program next year, go to www.SkyTavern.com. In fact, they need help now too. While other resorts can open early with the help of snowmaking equipment, Sky Tavern needs at least 5 feet of snow to open because of the obstacles (bushes, small trees, rocks). This summer they need to bring in heavy equipment to smooth out the terrain and make it easier to open at the beginning of the year. However, that takes money. They estimate it will take about $50,000 to re-design the mountain. Skiing is often viewed as a rich person’s sport. Sky Tavern makes it accessible to everyone thanks to the volunteers and supporters. Their goal is to become the regions foremost year round recreation facility. Every dollar raised will be dedicated to grooming the mountain.
From first hand experience, we can say Sky Tavern is a phenominal program. It is truly something special to see the kids work so hard to improve their skills and their huge smiles when they advance. Brett and I are thrilled to have been a part of it.