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Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Nation’s First Youth Only Nonprofit Facility: The Center Opens for the 2018 Winter Season

  • The Center to Host 1,800 Youth of All Backgrounds to Ski and Snowboard Program
  • Elev8 Curriculum Offerings Evolve with the New Nordic Complex

Press Release – Vernon, NJ., January 4, 2018 – On January 6th, the National Winter Activity Center (“The Center”) will open its doors to thousands of youth for their 4th Elev8 season. “The Center,” located in Vernon, NJ, is the nation’s first youth only 501(c)(3) nonprofit facility dedicated to improving the lives of youth through winter activity.

Elev8, The Center’s winter activity program, offers youth the opportunities to master skiing and snowboarding through multiple levels of learning. Elev8/LEARN supports participant’s journey from “never ever” to experienced enthusiasts. Elev8/DEVELOP takes young skiers to a competitive platform with all mountain skiing, and fundamentals; while Elev8/COMPETE continues the development of the athlete’s racing skills, all in one structured, comprehensive environment – The Center.

The Center, which will welcome nearly 1,800 youth – adding more than 700 new participants, is poised to positively impact their lives and inspire a new generation of winter sports enthusiasts from all backgrounds. Participants will enjoy upwards of 40 hours of outdoor activity during a time of year when they typically opt to stay indoors. Cross-country skiing is added to the Elev8/LEARN curriculum this year. With this Nordic experience, “The Center” offers youth the opportunity to engage in both types of winter activities. The Center’s board member Helen Ingebretsen, along with members of the Norwegian Ski Federation, have traveled to the National Winter Activity Center to assist in the process of evolving the Elev8 curriculum and developing a new ski play area, cross country trails and supporting infrastructure.

“With an enthusiastic board and international partners, there is the opportunity for youth to experience other activities that could lead to future Olympians,” said Schone Malliet, Founder and CEO of the Center. “In any case, they will surely become participants and fans of winter activities.”

Elev8/LEARN is an active, progressive, learning environment, providing youth with instruction, healthy meals, equipment and mentoring. These key factors help shape their development as young men and women, while improving their lives, health and fitness. The program serves participants within the tri-state area and beyond. In addition to local youth from NJ and NY YMCAs and schools, groups from Riverside Military Academy out of Gainesville, GA and the Jalen Rose Leadership Academy out of Detroit, MI will also take part in the Elev8/LEARN program. The Elev8/LEARN sessions enjoy a 1-to-8 instructor ratio with PSIA and US Ski & Snowboard trained “coaches.” Each visit includes a snack and meal as part of Elev8’s core focus. Important partners of the National Winter Activity Center include Ted Ligety, U.S. Ski Team, Olympian and World Champion, US. Ski & Snowboard, the International Ski Federation (FIS), and the National Ski Areas Association (NSAA).

The Center aims to introduce 7,000 children annually, to winter activities by the year 2022, with 75% of participants returning each year, joining beginners with the hope that many of the participants eventually enter the world of competitive winter sports. Additionally, the National Winter Activity Center will continue to work with U.S. Ski and Snowboard Team athletes to connect with the kids, providing motivation and inspiration.

For more information about the National Winter Activity Center, please visit www.winter4kids.org.

About National Winter Activity Center

The National Winter Activity Center or “The Center,” located in Vernon, NJ, is the Nation’s first 501(c)(3) nonprofit facility dedicated to improving the lives of thousands of youth through winter activity. Through “Elev8”, “The Center” offers youth the opportunities to master Alpine, Nordic skiing and snowboarding, shape their development as young men and women, while improving their lives, health, and fitness. The Center serves participants within the tristate area and beyond through partnerships with organizations such as YMCAs, Boys & Girls Clubs, Schools, and other youth serving agencies. Upon acquiring the Hidden Valley property in 2014, The Center has invested more than $20 million in overall improvements including new lifts, lighting, efficiently controlled snow-making machinery, outdoor plumbing, and renovations to the preexisting lodge. Additional construction of facilities to support growth and Nordic activities is underway. For more information about the National Winter Activity Center, please visit www.winter4kids.org.


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