Ski club tracking towards record membership in Terrace, B.C.

Gliding off a phenomenal season last year, the Snow Valley Nordic Ski Club is anticipating another record season this winter.

A group of skiers eagerly gears up to hit the Onion Lake cross country trails a few days after they opened Dec. 22.

Gliding off a phenomenal season last year, the Snow Valley Nordic Ski Club is anticipating another record season this winter.

Last year the club broke its record for the number of ski rentals and day passes sold in a season, and club president Dan McElheron says he expects many of the new people who explored the trails last year will sign up for membership this year.

“A lot of people really just discovered us last year, and bought day passes,” he said. “We had record rentals and record day passes, so this is where we figured it would translate into record membership this year,” he said.

This year already, the club has sold more early-bird memberships than ever before. The trails officially opened Dec. 22, and the club had a total of 309 members by last Tuesday, Dec. 27, the day they brought out the big groomer.

Now with a solid and smooth snow pack on the trails and programs starting up, McElheron said he expects a swath of more members.

The season has just begun and only 51 more members will break the overall club record, which is 360 members in a season.

“We thought we might do it last year,” said McElheron, “but I think that there’s a better chance this year because we’re already at almost 310.”

Last winter, the club had 335 members and the season was cut  short by a rainy downpour which melted snow  in mid-March, closing the trails a month early. But even with the shorter season, the club still broke several records, enrolling 61 children, more than ever before, in the Bunnies and Jackrabbits children’s programs.

It also sold $11,700 worth in day passes and $8,172 in rentals last year, nearly double the amount from 2014 when it made $6,521 from day passes and $4,396 from rentals.

Last year it also collected saw more than $7,000 from 2015, when the club collected $7,653 from day passes and $5,013 from rentals.

“We had a phenomenal year financially last year, and we reinvested everything back into the club,” said McElheron. “If we prosper, then the facility just keeps getting better.”

The club bolstered rental equipment, investing $12,000 in new gear, and made an early payment toward the loan for the new Bearcat groomer.

“Now we should be able to  pay it off a year early,” said McElheron.

Cell phone service has also been boosted at the Onion Lake trails, thanks to a new Telus tower installed nearby, McElheron noted.

Membership coordinator Cathy Vandenberg is also optimistic about this season.

“We might make a new record this year,” she said. “It all depends on the snow, and on people bringing out their friends to experience the trails! … More and more people are experiencing cross country skiing at Onion Lake – they enjoy the exercise, the fresh air, and the people.”

This Sunday, Jan. 8, the cross country ski trails will be open free for anyone, with free hot chocolate, free lessons and guided tours and $2 rentals. The annual open house runs from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Just Posted

Ministry defends proposed hunting restrictions

Options intended to balance population and allocation to move forward with input by April or May

Terrace RCMP Inspector Syd Lecky transferring to Kamloops

Departure likely months away, replacement process yet to begin

Province to boost ER services at Mills Memorial

Money to add salaried doctor positions

Province opens public input on policing standards

The move flows from recommendations of the Missing Women Commission of Inquiry

Terrace hockey player breaks all-time points record in Major Midget League

Prospects are bright for Mason Richey, suiting up this fall with the West Kelowna Warriors

Ottawa proposes restricted pot labels, packages

Packaging will include red stop sign with marijuana leaf and ‘THC’

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

B.C. Scientists witness first-ever documented killer whale infanticide

“It’s horrifying and fascinating at the same time.”

Okanagan Falls winery showing international photo project

Liquidity Wines will be sole Canadian show of National Geographic’s Photo Ark

Lawyer for one suspect in beating of man with autism says he’s not guilty

Ronjot Singh Dhami will turn himself in, lawyer said

Liberals awarded $100,000 contract to man at centre of Facebook data controversy

Christopher Wylie says his voter-profiling company collected private information from 50 million Facebook users

Facebook’s Zuckerberg admits mistakes in privacy scandal

Zuckerberg admits to privacy scandal involving a Trump-connected data-mining firm, but no apology

UPDATE: Former B.C. city councillor sentenced nine months for sexual assault

Dave Murray, convicted this past fall, hired a private investigator to intrude on the victim’s life.

Online threat to U.S. high school traced to Canadian teen

A 14-year-old girl has been charged in connection with an online threat against a high school

Most Read