Many state ski associations offer complimentary ski and snowboard programs through elementary schools. Each state ski association has its own program, which is generally geared to a specific grade level. The children receive a season pass or coupons that are valid for complimentary visits at the participating ski areas. The objective is to encourage kids to try skiing and snowboarding and experience the excitement and exhilaration of outdoor recreation during winter months. Below are the various programs organized alphabetically by state.
Colorado Ski Country USA was the first to create a FREE ski program for 5th grade students six years ago called the Fifth Grade Passport. The program provides 5th grade students with three days of skiing and snowboarding at 23 Colorado resorts. That’s more than 65 days of skiing and riding. They also receive other discounts on lessons, rentals, tickets for mom and dad and more. More than 75,000 kids have participated in the program since its inception and it is our goal to provide this winter experience to more and more Colorado kids and their families.
WinterKids Passport offers all Maine 5th, 6th, and 7th graders an entire season of free, healthy, outdoor winter recreation opportunities including downhill and cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, snowboarding, and ice skating, along with free or discounted lessons and rentals. The Passport also offers parents and siblings of all Passport holders free or discounted tickets, lessons, and rentals, ensuring that families develop healthy lifestyles together. The Passport encourages wholesome physical fitness for the entire family and reaches almost 20% of Maine’s population.
- New York
The New York State Division of Tourism, in cooperation with Ski Areas of New York Inc. (SANY), offer the 4th Graders Ski & Ride Passport Program, an innovative initiative designed to introduce fourth-grade students to winter mountain recreation in New York State. Under the 4th Graders Ski & Ride Passport Program, the New York State mountain resort industry is offering unmatched and unprecedented skiing and snowboarding values to any fourth-grade student, whether or not they are from New York State, for the 2002-03 winter season. Eligible students will receive a “Passport” book containing three coupons for free skiing and/or snowboarding at each of the participating ski areas in New York State. The only cost is a $10 processing fee.
- New Hampshire
Earn Your Turns is a program in which all 4th graders can enhance reading, writing and research skills while having fun discovering New Hampshire’s extensive skiing history and heritage. Students complete a research project, their teachers approve them, and then authorize Ski NH to mail the students their Earn Your Turns passbooks. Each passbook offers 34 days of skiing and snowboarding, a $5 learn to ski or snowboard package, and many other offers for the student, parents and siblings, including discounts on lift tickets and trail passes, rentals, lessons, tickets and food.
Any 5th graders can enjoy up to 100 days of free skiing and riding for free when they participate in the 5th Grade Passport Program. Kids can ski for free at 18 Alpine areas and 30 Nordic areas when they are accompanied by an adult.