January is Learn to Ski and Snowboard month, and throughout the Midwest ski areas are offering discounted lesson programs. Michigan offers the only statewide program, which is available at ski areas throughout the Wolverine State. None of the other Heartland state associations offer a statewide program for easy access, cost, and simplicity. The nice thing is that if you live near either one of Michigan's peninsulas you can cross the border and enroll in a ski area near you.
Michigan Snowsports Industries Association (MSIA) and McDonald’s Restaurant team up to offer an affordable lesson package for both first-time adults and children. It covers downhill skiing for those seven and up and snowboarding for 10 or older. Cross country skiing lessons are for seven and up. If you live in northern Indiana, Ohio or Wisconsin to take advantage of the program at a ski area along the border.
The Discover Michigan Ski program includes a beginner lesson, ski or snowboard rental, and a beginner area lift pass or cross country trail pass at 26 of the state’s top ski areas. The program is available throughout the month of January. The cost for the program is $20 for a cross country skiing lesson and $35 for a downhill skiing or snowboarding lesson.
Signing up is easy. The vouchers are available at participating MSIA retail ski stores and online. The voucher lists participating ski areas, but you must pre-register with the area you choose for the lesson.
A sampling of participating areas includes some of the larger resorts in the state; Boyne Mountain, Nubs Nob, Treetops, Mt. Brighton, Mt. Holly, Timber Ridge in the Lower Peninsula, and Big Powderhorn, Ski Brule and Big Snow in the UP are just a few of the participating ski areas.