U12 and U10 Training 12/26 – 12/31: Important Schedule Change 12/26 and 12/27

Hello U10 and U12 Families,

I hope this finds you well and enjoying the holidays!

Unfortunately the weather continues to be an incredible challenge up here in VT.   Warm temperatures and rain have allowed very few opportunities for snow making, though Okemo is aggressively taking advantage of any possible opportunity.  Sadly this week’s weather has deteriorated the excellent cover they put down last weekend and the mountain forecast is for more warm and rainy weather over the next few days and into the weekend.  Mountain lodging reservations are very high for the holiday period despite the weather and it is predicted that there will be many skiers and riders on the hill this weekend and through winter break.  This puts us in another situation where skiing in organized groups becomes a safety concern.  This may seem somewhat counter-intuitive, but when young athletes ski as a group they tend to operate with blinders on – unaware of other skiers or hazards on the trail and only concerned with keeping up with the group.

Therefore, Okemo Mountain management has asked us to alter our training schedule this coming weekend for the safety of our athletes.  They have generously offered to allow us on the Solitude lift early and the opportunity to ski on Heaven’s Gate and Screamin’ Demon while they remain closed to the public until 9 am.  This will require a change to our normal schedule and plans.

On both Saturday 12/26 and Sunday 12/27, U12 and U10 athletes will meet coaches at the BOTTOM of the SOLITUDE lift at 7:20 am on SL skis.  Parents – you will need to drop your children off at Solitude as they will not be able to ski there at that time.  Be aware that ONLY athletes will be allowed on the lift and the closed trails at that time, so you will need to return to the Main Base to ski yourselves. They should arrive ready to go as there are no lodge services (such as a place to store footwear) in Solitude Day Lodge. Athletes will ski with coaches until 9 am at which time they will be able to ski back to the main base to meet up with you – please determine a meeting place with them prior to dropping them off. Coaches will ski back to the main base area with them.  There will only be a morning session both days this weekend.

Training from 12/28-12/31 will be determined on a day-to-day basis as we see how the forecast unfolds over the next few days.  There is a possibility for colder weather to move in on Monday, but we just are in a holding pattern for now.  Please stay tuned for more info as we are able to make decisions. Be aware that we may have to alter the schedule again and could lose a day of training if conditions don’t improve.

Please understand that Okemo Mountain management greatly values the families and coaches of the Competition Center and is working as hard as possible to provide opportunities for us.  They are working aggressively on snowmaking and are looking for any ways to help us out, like the Solitude option this weekend.  Most other competition programs are not given such benefits by their mountains.  Please bear with us and them through this challenging weather.  We are all trying to balance the safety of our 300 + athletes with providing as many training opportunities as possible.  It certainly is the most difficult in the last 10+ years!

In other news, The End of the Year Open originally scheduled for 12/30 has been postponed to a later date TBD.

Below is information copied from previous emails – please review this especially if you are new to the program or hearing from me for the first time.

A few reminders and important info:

1) Please read U12.10 101 2015.16 Edition for LOTS of information including training and race schedules – this is helpful for new and returning families.  It includes information about the program, some of which has been updated for this year, as well as race schedule info.  So even if you are an old pro, PLEASE read :)! If you have any questions after reading, don’t hesitate to be in touch.

2) You can find this and every email I send on the OMARA blog – go2omara.com.  U12/10 announcements are at this link specifically: http://go2omara.com/category/announcements/u10u12-announcements/ Also check out the U12/10 FAQs: http://go2omara.com/alpine-racing/u10u12/devo-program-faqs/

3) USSA and VARA memberships:  In order to race, every U12/10 must be a current USSA and VARA member.  If you have not registered your child for these memberships, please do so ASAP.  Both can be done online at ussa.org and vara.org, respectively.  More info on these memberships is found in the attachment.  IMPORTANT: For USSA choose, Competitor U12 or Competitor U10 (depending on your child’s age group), NOT General Member – this is not valid for competition.

4) Informational U10 and U12 Meeting – We will be scheduling a meeting for U10 and U12 families so that you can come and meet coaches off the hill and learn more about the program.  We are going to hold of on having this until winter break (potentially January 2nd) to try and make it more convenient for everyone to attend as attendance in mid-December has been low in past years.  Please look for more info later.

That’s all for now!  Both new and old parents are reminded to read all communication carefully.  If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email me.

Think snow,


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