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Tamarack Youth Ski Club
Welcome to the Tamarack Youth Ski Club!!
We are looking forward to skiing with you this winter! Because of the pandemic, there have been some changes, but we are excited to still be able to have SkiSparks this winter. MYSL has created a thorough COVID-19 Plan in order to keep all skiers and volunteers safe and healthy this ski season. Details about the COVID-19 SkiSparks Guidelines and Plan can be found below.
SkiSparks is a volunteer-led program so every family is strongly encouraged to help. Please see below for volunteer information, including new volunteer positions for this year. We thank you in advance!
Schedule and location
Because of the pandemic, MYSL will not be having in-person club meetings for the month of January, but will offer great virtual opportunities. As of now, the first in-person club meeting is scheduled for Saturday, February 6th, 2021 from 2:00pm-3:30pm at the Tamarack Nature Center. We plan to meet as a club for the 4 Saturdays in February. Due to the guidelines with the pandemic, we plan to stagger the start times for each group as we are only allowed 25 people per group, which includes skiers and volunteers. Additionally, because of the pandemic, we will not be using any indoor space, such as the Garden House, this year. We will have preassigned meeting areas for each group which we will communicate with you prior to the first meeting.
This club is full. Please add your name to the waiting list by filling out this form.
COVID-19 Guidelines and Plan for SkiSparks
MYSL has a thorough plan to minimize the risk of exposure to any of the skiers and volunteers. We encourage all participants to read the comprehensive guidelines which can be found here. The following are some of the important guidelines.
All Minnesota SkiSparks Clubs must abide by the group size guidelines set forth by the DNR and Minnesota Department of Health which state no more than 25 people per group. Our club will employ staggered starts to allow for the groups to be 25 people or less. Our ski club will be capped at 40 skiers.
We will not have any group snacks this season.
The club sessions will all be held outside. We will not be using any indoor space this season.
There will be a 4 skier:1 coach ratio this season.
The Health and Safety Pledge must be signed by all caregivers/parents and volunteers during the skier registration and volunteer signup.
Face coverings are required at check-in, check-out, and any time 6’ of social distancing is not easily maintained. A ski buff is considered a face covering.
Skiers and volunteers will need to pass a health screening at club check-in, which includes a contactless temperature check.
Level 1 skiers (4 and 5 year-olds) must have a caregiver with them at all times. The caregiver can be on or off skis.
All adults skiing with a group must be registered volunteers (including caregivers of level 1 skiers).
Upon check-in, face coverings must be worn by skiers, volunteers, and caregivers throughout the entire check-in process. Coaches will place cones 6’ apart for each participant to stand during check-in. In addition to the contactless thermometer temperature screening, all skiers will answer screening questions.
During the ski session, face coverings must be worn by adult and junior coaches. Skiers may remove their face coverings when skiing, but must always have face covers on when they are receiving instruction. Skiers and coaches will remain 6’ from each other for the duration of a SkiSparks session.
All skiers must have a caregiver within 10 minutes of the facility for the duration of the club meeting. If a skier becomes sick or becomes cold during the club session, the contact number on the skier’s bib will be called.
Weather and cancellation policy
We will not ski if the air temperature is below 2˚ F, or the wind chill is below -10˚ F, or at the leader’s discretion. Always check the website or email email@example.com with questions. Cancellations will be posted on this web page and notification sent through email.
Children should be dressed in layers. A moisture-wicking base layer, an insulating layer, and a wind-proof layer are typically appropriate. Please use your discretion, noting your child’s activity level and the outside temperature/wind chill. Often, a winter jacket and snow pants or a snowsuit are too warm once the child gets skiing unless they are young and in the beginner group.
We have some great equipment for skiers to use for a nominal fee of $45 for the entire season. This equipment can be taken home and used for family outings. Please remember we have a limited number of ski packages and sizes, so register early. If you paid for rental equipment on-line but were not able to be outfitted, you will be reimbursed for the fees.
The MYSL Ski Swap occurred on Nov. 14th, 2020. Another option for ski equipment is to purchase new equipment at a local Ski Shop:
- Boulder Nordic Sports (BNS) -- Wirth Park
- FinnSisu -- St. Paul
- Gear West -- Long Lake
- Hoigaards -- St. Louis Park
- Joe's Sporting Goods -- St. Paul
- Pioneer Midwest -- Osseo
- Play it Again Sports -- various locations
If renting equipment is what works best for your family, equipment may be available at other clubs. Please go to our Find a Club page and look on the right column for rental equipment availability.
Our rental skis are classic no-wax skis. We do not have skate ski equipment available on a rental basis. Children skiing in level 5 or above should have their own skate skis, boots, and poles. In addition, for children skiing at level 4 or above, waxable classic skis are highly recommended.
Please register early to ensure a spot at Tamarack! Because of the pandemic, the number of skiers will be limited to 40 skiers this year. Register on the main page for MYSL by selecting "Club Membership."
Levels and age guidelines are as follows:
For children who are new to MYSL, assign the child to the lowest skill level that spans their age as of January 1. If a child has skied at least 10 times, consider advancing them one skill level. It is common for kids to repeat skill levels, so returning families need to choose a skill based on last season’s performance, but still staying within the age ranges. Coaches will assess children at the first meeting, but it is important for parents to accurately assign levels by age during the registration process.
Classic ski lessons: Level I: ages 4-5 (parents ski or walk along with the child), Level 2: ages 6-8 (parents check in occasionally), Level 3: ages 7-10, Level 3*: beginner skiers who are 11 years old or older, Level 4: ages 8-12, Level 5: ages 9-14.
More about skill levels here: http://mysl.org/skill-levels. Questions about levels? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We will be communicating with Tamarack SkiSparks families via email. We need valid emails for everyone. When you register, please include a contact e-mail address.
MYSL is on Facebook! You can “like” the MYSL page to get general announcements, photos and videos from each of the MYSL clubs.
Need to contact us? Email us at email@example.com
This club is led by volunteers! The success and affordability of this program come directly from your contributions of time, energy, and talent. By registering for this club, you are committing to the club’s success and are agreeing to volunteer. Thank you!
Level 1 skiers will need to be accompanied by an adult. Coaching at level 1 is a great way to accompany your child. We are also in very great need of coaches for all levels 1-6. Please consider coaching as it is our number one need! You do not necessarily need to coach at your child’s level.
Following are some suggested areas of volunteer service:
We really need your help! This is our biggest need and is one of the most rewarding ways in which you can help the club. Kids get more out of the program when the coach-to-kid ratio is low, and coaches need not be experienced skiers to volunteer. Our coach-to-kid ratio this year will be 1:4. The MYSL program makes it easy for a coach to know what to do. An eight-week curriculum has been prepared for every class level and each day's lesson is printed on a card that can be carried in your pocket. The pocket guide also provides many helpful tips and games to keep classes enjoyable and interesting. You do not have to be an elite level skier to be a coach! All you need is a desire to help kids and have fun!
High school aged skiers, we need you! We rely heavily on high school volunteers, who are fun, friendly and in far better shape than most of us. Coaching for Tamarack SkiSparks qualifies as a service commitment for NHS. Think about how great this will look on a college application!
Assistant and Substitue Coaches:
As an assistant coach, you can support a coach by accompanying the group on the trails and helping skiers. If you feel like your skiing level is at the same level as the level your kids are signed up for, you would be a fantastic assistant coach! You are not in charge of the instruction, rather you are there to make sure the kids are safe, have an adult to bring them to the bathroom, and can assist with activities. If you are a substitute coach, you can fill in when a coach isn’t able to make it to ski club.
Ski in the back of a group and encourage the kids.
The goal of the director is to complete administrative tasks in order to create an inclusive and welcoming club.
The Outreach Coordinator will connect and facilitate partnerships between MyXC and underserved communities.
Manage and distribute rental skis.
Take pictures at club meetings with personal camera/phone and share with club members and MYSL staff.
*Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up for the volunteer opportunities!