Vermont U8 Ski Race Programs - Recommendations?

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  1. #1

    Vermont U8 Ski Race Programs - Recommendations?

    My son will be 6 in December and we are looking for a 2-day weekend race program. I have some information about Bromley's program, which I liked, and have seen the kids ski in the Okemo program, which looked very good. He is solid on the required skills to enter the program but would be on the young side. We are coming from Connecticut, so Okemo, Bromley are closest, Northern VT would be a stretch. I would be grateful for any info folks may have. Thanks very much!

  2. #2
    Newpylong's Avatar
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    What about Southington or Sundown or even the places in the Berkshires? Not sure about U8 (that is really young) but they all had strong youth race programs when I was growing up in Tristate.

  3. #3
    I had not considered those because I had assumed they had limited terrain (family of 5 skiers) and shorter seasons, but I will look at them at your recommendation. We'd also like to join a program that we can continue with as he gets older. We also ski Vermont a lot. Thanks!

  4. #4
    CT ski season is about 2nd or 3rd week of December to mid March. The advantage is frequency, if he'll ski more because it's closer, that's a big plus. If you're already in VT a large number of days, then you get bigger vertical, longer season, better snow, etc.

    When you say "Weekend Program" do you mean a one weekend race camp, or a season long every weekend program? If the latter Killington Ski Club has a youth program. Dr Jeff should chime in, he has kids that race and is Mt Snow based.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Newpylong View Post
    What about Southington or Sundown or even the places in the Berkshires? Not sure about U8 (that is really young) but they all had strong youth race programs when I was growing up in Tristate.
    I would concur with this suggestion. Having coached for many years in Southern New England (20+) many of these small areas have great programs and offer outstanding coaching. IMHO opinion and it is bias (grew up racing at a CT area) the smaller local areas, especially at an early age provide increased benefit to skier development as compared to the bigger neighbors to the north. At that young age, the small ski areas provide perfect terrain too develop critical skill sets and a more personal experience.
    "If you ride your bike everyday...... Your going to be a better rider!"

  6. #6
    Full on dual U16/19 and highschool racer parent here, CT resident (out in the Northeast Corner) as well as Mount Snow 2nd home owner where both my kids started as U10's in the Mount Snow Alpine Comp team and have continued up to this season where *hopefully* if Alpine racing can happen it will be my daughter's 9th year and sons 8th year in the Mount Snow program which is part of the Southern VT Council of VARA (Vermont Alpine Racing Association) of which Bromley, Magic, Stratton, Willard, NY and maybe even once again the Hermitage are a part of as well. In addition to being familiar with the Mount Southington Program as that's where my kids highschool races are held

    The Bromley Outing Club has a very solid program for sure, with lots of family involvement, same with Magic's program for the U10 and under young racers. The Stratton and Mount Snow programs, while solid, do have some more "drama" around them at times if I am totally honest.

    Southington runs a GOOD program, with solid coaches, and with the size of the hill, racers get a ton of training laps in. Southington is part of the tri-state league, which races with mountains in Mass and RI as well as CT.

    Not sure where in CT you live, but the programs in Mass out of Wachusett, Jiminy, Butternut, and Berkshire East are solid as well at most any USSSA age group level.

    With the COVID-19 uncertainty from an operations standpoint for this coming season, a smaller area, might actually end up with more option for a developing young racer!

    Enjoy the journey! It's a blast, and I can't believe that the reality is that my kids are most likely closing in on the end of their junior racing careers, as it seems like just yesterday I was taking my oldest to her 1st U10 race, which was at Stratton, and that was in January of 2012!!

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  7. #7
    Wow, thank you for all of that info! Bromley/Okemo are ~3 1/2 hrs. I will look at the others - Mt Snow would be closer ~3hrs. Good to know there are more local options, if we burn out on the weekend, 3hr drives. Fingers crossed for a full season, good luck!

  8. #8
    I am going to look at the local programs also (they were not on my radar before). He would be on the young side so more attention would matter, particularly in his first year.


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