Sky Tavern Ski and Bike Swap
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Hundreds of thousands of kids have been taught skiing and snowboarding by parents and other adults at a ski area just for them. While once part of the City of Reno, Sky Tavern is now a 501(c) 3 non-profit. Located on the Mt.Rose Highway, 30 minutes from Reno, every winter the Junior Ski Program operates weekends with the parents and grandparents helping for a few hours as the staff of Sky Tavern. An old fashion CO-OP that is a true community effort. Financial support comes from pass fees and private donors. Whatever is collected goes right back into kids.
There are lots of different ways a kid gets to be involved (see the Our Programs tab). The basics are that if a youngster is 9 to high school age they can sign up for the bus program and come up alone for Saturday or Sunday. Buses run from five area schools, Reed, Spanish Springs, McQueen, O'Brien and Galena. Over the last 70 years this has been a rite of passage growing up in the Truckee Meadows. Hundreds of kids a day load their gear and get away for a day in the snow. The cost is a little higher to pay for the ride, but what kids learn and experience on their own, changes lives.
All kids from age three can join with their parents or other adults that join the Junior Ski Program and drive up. Three to five year olds are in a separate program running at the same time called SkyKids (see Programs tab). All children six and above are divided into classes by age and ability and take lessons all morning to get better at the sport. Adult fees are very low but it is how the power bill gets paid. All adults are activily involved every day while at Sky Tavern. Some parents are instructors, while other work in support roles such as the cafeteria, lift lines or other needed positions. Most adult positions are two hours a day and everyone is part of the process of running a ski area with no one on the sidelines! Parents and other adults giving up time, talent and treasure for the kids is how this gets done each year. All your new best friends are at Sky Tavern and the cost to an adult is pretty low compared to the fun. It is worth everything you will put into the kids!
Tavern has one of the largest groups of Professional Ski Instructors of America
(PSIA) and American Association of Snowboard Instructors(AASI) in the Tahoe
area. These are parents that found they loved teaching and became certified
through a free program at Sky Tavern. They watch over the other parents that are
instructing making sure everyone progresses. Lessons range from beginning
to very advanced levels including racing and freestyle. Instruction starts at
age three in SkyKids and go on up to high schoolers. There are even lessons for
Mom and Dad included in being part of the process.
only, planned eight week program starting in January, the objective is to
provide a safe and fun environment that fosters being active, family fun and a
lifelong love of winter sports at as low a price as possible. Kids attend
classes every morning and have the afternoon to show off what they can do by
To plan, train
and provide recreational activities for the citizens of the