In an ongoing effort to attract youngsters to the slopes – and keep them coming back – resorts in the West and Northwest will once again offer ski and snowboarding passes that are virtually free.
The industry has targeted fifth-and sixth-graders as a key age group for increasing and/or maintaining skier-day visits and, this season, resorts in Colorado, Utah, Idaho and the Northwest are on board.
All four programs give free or deeply discounted passes to young and experienced skiers and snowboarders at participating resorts – ranging from one to four days free at each resort in the region. Three come with a processing fee, and parents must sign up online for their children. Specials on equipment, rentals and lessons are available, too, but some blackout dates may apply.
Here’s how they work in each case:
· In October, applications for the Northwest program can be made in October for fifth-graders at nearly two dozen resorts in in the region. each youngster gets three days at participating resorts for a $20 processing fee, Information.
· The Ski Idaho program also will sign up youngsters in October. In addition to online applications, forms will be distributed in selected Idaho classrooms. fifth-graders get three free days at some two dozen Idaho mountains for $20 fee, while sixth-graders get two free days. Information.
· Ski Utah’s program also targets fifth-graders with three free days at any of the state’s 14 resorts, while sixth-graders get one free day. Processing feeis $30 until Jan. 31, when it goes up to $40. For online applications, parents must have digital photo of child or they must mail in application with print photo. Information.
· In Colorado, fifth-graders get special attention, with three free days at 20 participating resorts for experienced riders and skiers – and a free lesson and equipment rental in January for “never-evers.” Sixth-graders pay $99 for four days free at each of the resorts. There's no processing fee. Information.
Photos: Keystone Kids Ski School (Keystone); Youngster at Brighton Resort (Facebook)