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Cross Country Skiing

FEBRUARY 23th at Lebanon Hills

Our last session of the year is at Lebanon Hills tomorrow. Weather will be nice and it will likely be crowded, so be sure to arrive by 12:30  so your skier is ready to ski at 12:45!

FEBRUARY 16th at LEBANON HILLS

There is still enough snow to ski at Lebanon Hills. See you there!

FEBRUARY 9th at LEBANON HILLS

Arrive at 12:30, ready to ski by 12:45.

FEBRUARY 2nd AT LEBANON HILLS

Arrive 12:30, ready to ski at 12:45. Hope to see you there!

JANUARY 26th at LEBANON HILLS

Come enjoy the snow at Lebanon Hills as we hold our session there at our regular time on Sunday!  Arrive 12:30, ready to ski at 12:45.

JANUARY 19th AT LEBANON HILLS

Conditions should be skiiable at Lebanon Hills on Sunday, so please plan to show up there on Sunday, January 19th unless you hear otherwise. Plan to arrive in the parking lot at least by 12:30 since we start skiing at 12:45. The address is 860 Cliff Road, Eagan, MN 55123 which is at the Visitor Center near Schulz Lake. Since this is our first time at Lebanon Hills this year, here are some additional details.

  1. Meeting Place: Our meeting area will be behind the visitor center near the lake. To get there from the parking lot, go between the Visitor Center and the rental equipment building where you will find our bib distribution table. There you can pick up the Minnesota Youth Ski League bib with your skier’s name, and then proceed to the meeting area for your skier’s group which is identified by a colored flag. You can determine which flag to meet at by matching the flag to the color on your skier’s nametag.
  2. Start Time: To minimize the amount of time skiers stand around getting cold, we try to release the skiers onto the trails promptly at 12:45. To make sure they are ready to ski at 12:45, we suggest you allow at least 10 minutes for skiers to get their bib, put on their skis, and get to their meeting area. That means it is probably wise to be in exiting your vehicle in the parking lot at 12:30; earlier if you have multiple skiers to corral. Latecomers will need to wait for their group to return since we can’t have skiers heading off on their own to try and find their group unless they are with a parent. If you arrive late we will try to have your skier’s group return to meet your skier but this is not always possible, so in that case your skier may have to ski with their parent/guardian.
  3. Visitor Center: Although you are welcome to use the Visitor Center to have your skier change into ski boots, we’ve found that it is best if skiers put their boots on at home or in the car to minimize congestion in the building and to help them be ready to ski at 12:45. Please do not bring skis or poles into the Visitor Center.  There are ski racks outside the building to use. Some may be reserved for MYSL use, so feel free to use those if you see them.
  4. Skier Group Assignments: Our coaches to their best to place skiers in a group that is the best fit for them, and this may change from week to week, and may mean the skier is separated from a friend. If this is a problem let one of our volunteers or coaches know and we'll work to figure out a solution.P
  5. Parent Skiers: You are welcome and encouraged to ski with your child’s group as a “Ski Chaperone”. Just let the group leader know, and if you can assist with any issues such as dropped mittens, loose boots, etc. while skiing along that would be appreciated. Please be aware that all adult skiers who are not coaching will need a trail pass, so please factor this into your schedule since that could take a few minutes depending on the line. Cost at Lebanon Hills is $5 or $6 per day or a season pass for $25.
  6. On Site Rentals: if you are renting skis at Lebanon Hills, as you come down the sidewalk the rental building will be on your left. Ask for the MYSL rate, which is valid for both youth skiers and their parents or guardians. Remember to arrive even earlier to allow for the time it takes to go through the rental process.
  7. End of Session: At the end of the session, skiers should remember to a) return their bibs to the bib distribution table; and b) thank their group leader and any assistants. Dakota County sells hot chocolate and has other drinks available in the Visitor Center, and many skiers find it enjoyable to get a hot chocolate drink after their session. Cost is $1.
  8. Meet the Coach/K Counter: We encourage parents and guardians to introduce themselves to your skier’s coach at the end of each session. This way you can understand what your skier learned that day and how far they skied. 

JANUARY 12TH SESSION MOVED TO HYLAND

As we did last week,  we will be meeting at Hyland for our Week 2 session. The conditions at Lebanon Hills are icy and not conducive to a pleasant or educational ski experience. Please check previous emails or the previous posts on this web page to be aware of key items when meeting at Hyland. Some important items to be aware of this week:
 
• Our coaches make every effort to head out on the ski trails promptly at 11:45 so it best to ARRIVE by 11:30 if not earlier.
• We are scheduled to finish at 1:00 PM, but sometimes groups return early. It is always nice to be waiting for your skier(s)when they return so you can see the big smile on their face showing you what a fun time they had.
• We DO have authorization to use the “Jan’s Place” building to warm-up if needed. Be aware that it can get very crowded in so don’t assume you’ll be able to find room in there while waiting for your skier.
 
Thanks and we’ll see you there!

Details regarding our move to Hyland on January 5th

Details regarding moving our first session to Hyland one hour earlier

Due to un-skiable conditions at Lebanon Hills, our first ski session will move to the Hyland Park Reserve in Bloomington (10145 Bush Lake Rd, Bloomington, MN 55438) where they have snowmaking equipment. We will meet from 11:45 to 1:00. We apologize for having to meet at the earlier time but due to the high demand we have to take the time assigned to us.

There are a couple of things to be aware of at Hyland:

  • Meeting Place: We will be meeting outside the building called "Jan's Place". This is the first parking lot PAST the main visitor center. There you can pick up the Minnesota Youth Ski League bib with your skier’s name, and then proceed to the meeting area. Just look for the flag with the same color as your skier's nametag. There may be other ski clubs there so be sure to look for the Lebanon Hills club.
  • Start Time: To minimize the amount of time skiers stand around getting cold, when at Hyland we will try to release them with their leaders onto the trails promptly at 11:45.  To make sure they are ready to ski at 11:45, we suggest you allow at least 15 minutes for skiers to get their bib, put on their skis, and get to their meeting area. That means it is probably wise to be in exiting your vehicle in the parking lot at 11:30; earlier if you have multiple skiers to corral. Latecomers will need to wait for their group to return; we can’t have skiers heading off on their own to try and find their group unless they are with a parent. They expanded parking at Hyland over the summer, but it may still get crowded.
  • Trail Pass: At Hyland, a trail pass must be purchased for anyone 12 years of age or older. Passes ($9.50 + tax last year) can be purchased at the main Visitor Center.  Please plan your time accordingly if you need to purchase a trail pass.  Note that our group will NOT be meeting at the main Visitor Center so if you have to buy a pass you will need to make a separate stop here.
  • Label Your Equipment: Please be sure to label your skis and poles with your child’s name. Colorful duct tape or painter's tape works well for this process.  Many youth skis are the same brand and size and they are easy to mix up.
  • Prep:  We’ve found that it is best if skiers put their boots on at home or in the car to help them be ready to ski at 11:45.
  • Parent Skiers: You are welcome and encouraged to ski with your child’s group as a “Ski Chaperone”. Just let the group leader know, and if you can assist with any issues such as dropped mittens, loose boots, etc. while skiing along that would be appreciated. Please be aware that all adult skiers (inlcuding coaches) will need a trail pass, so please factor this into your schedule since that could take a few minutes depending on the line. 
  • On Site Rentals:  if you are renting skis at Hyland, do so at the main visitor center as you enter the park. Remember that we do not meet at this location, we meet at the building called "Jan's Place". Remember to arrive even earlier to allow for the time it takes to go through the rental process
  • Hyland does NOT allow any walking on or alongside the trails, so those of you with younger skiers will not be able to accompany your skier unless you are on skis. However, the very young skiers will be likely be in the "training" area and parents can stand nearby and watch.

Thanks for your understanding with this move. Although it is likely a further drive for you, the conditions should make it a more positive experience for your skier.

JAN 5TH SESSION MOVED TO HYLAND

The warm weather has deteriorated the conditions at Lebanon Hills and unfortunately we will need to move tomorrow's session to Hyland. This means there is also a time change and we will start skiing at 11:45 AM. Please try to arrive by 11:30 AM.
 
We will send more details in an email later today, but wanted to let you know now about this time and location change.
 

Information for first session of the year on January 5th

 Welcome to the 2020 EVAA Cross-Country Skiing season! Our first session is, Sunday, Jan 5th, from 12:45 -2:00 at Lebanon Hills. That means you should probably plan to arrive in the parking lot at least by 12:30 since we start skiing at 12:45. The address is 860 Cliff Road, Eagan, MN 55123 which is at the Visitor Center near Schulz Lake. As you prepare for our first session, we wanted to provide the following helpful hints for week 1:

  1. Meeting Place: Our meeting area will be behind the visitor center near the lake. To get there from the parking lot, go between the Visitor Center and the rental equipment building where you will find our bib distribution table. There you can pick up the Minnesota Youth Ski League bib with your skier’s name, and then proceed to the meeting area for your skier’s group which is identified by a colored flag. You can determine which flag to meet at by matching the flag to the color on your skier’s nametag.
  2. Start Time: To minimize the amount of time skiers stand around getting cold, we try to release the skiers onto the trails promptly at 12:45. To make sure they are ready to ski at 12:45, we suggest you allow at least 10 minutes for skiers to get their bib, put on their skis, and get to their meeting area. That means it is probably wise to be in exiting your vehicle in the parking lot at 12:30; earlier if you have multiple skiers to corral. Latecomers will need to wait for their group to return since we can’t have skiers heading off on their own to try and find their group unless they are with a parent. If you arrive late we will try to have your skier’s group return to meet your skier but this is not always possible, so in that case your skier may have to ski with their parent/guardian.
  3. Label Your Equipment: Please be sure to label your skis and poles with your child’s name. Colorful duct tape works well for this process. Many youth skis are the same brand and size and they are easy to mix up.
  4. Visitor Center: Although you are welcome to use the Visitor Center to have your skier change into ski boots, we’ve found that it is best if skiers put their boots on at home or in the car to minimize congestion in the building and to help them be ready to ski at 12:45. Please do not bring skis or poles into the Visitor Center.  There are ski racks outside the building to use. Some may be reserved for MYSL use, so feel free to use those if you see them.  
  5. Patience: We have over 100 skiers signed up for our session, so when combined with parents we will have quite a crowd. All of our coaches and leaders are volunteers who are donating their time to help make this a good experience for your skier. Please be patient as our volunteers do their best to get organized this first week, and remember that your child’s group leader may also be working with his/her own child to get equipment on, visit the restroom, or handling the many other needs that spontaneously arise with children.
  6. Skier Group Assignments: We do our best to place skiers in a group that is the best fit for them.  If you find that your child’s assigned group does not seem to be a good fit, please let one of our volunteers or coaches know and we’ll attempt to adjust for future sessions.
  7. Parent Skiers: You are welcome and encouraged to ski with your child’s group as a “Ski Chaperone”. Just let the group leader know, and if you can assist with any issues such as dropped mittens, loose boots, etc. while skiing along that would be appreciated. Please be aware that all adult skiers who are not coaching will need a trail pass, so please factor this into your schedule since that could take a few minutes depending on the line. Cost at Lebanon Hills is $5 or $6 per day or a season pass for $25.
  8. On Site Rentals: if you are renting skis at Lebanon Hills, as you come down the sidewalk the rental building will be on your left. Ask for the MYSL rate, which is valid for both youth skiers and their parents or guardians. Remember to arrive even earlier to allow for the time it takes to go through the rental process
  9. End of Session: At the end of the session, skiers should remember to a) return their bibs to the bib distribution table; and b) thank their group leader and any assistants. Dakota County sells hot chocolate and has other drinks available in the Visitor Center, and many skiers find it enjoyable to get a hot chocolate drink after their session. Last year the cost was $1.
  10. Meet the Coach: We encourage parents and guardians to introduce themselves to your skier’s coach at the end of each session. This way you can understand what your skier learned that day and how far they skied. 

Please be aware that we will not necessarily send reminder emails to you for upcoming sessions, so it is always wise to check the club webpage for any announcements. In addition, we have facebook, twitter, and instagram accounts managed by our Minnesota Youth Ski League partners that will enable you to stay abreast of club announcements and information.

  • Twitter: @mysl_leb_hills
  • Facebook: MYSL Lebanon Hills
  • Instagram: mysl_lebhills

Thanks, and we are looking forward to a fun, snow-filled season. If you have any questions, it is best to email them now rather than waiting to ask in person when we’re trying to get the skiers in their groups and out on their skis. 

We’ll see you on Sunday!

Welcome to Cross-Country (Nordic) Skiing

WELCOME! 

Registration for the 2020 EVAA Cross Country Ski program is expected to open in early November. Our program will be run in collaboration with the Minnesota Youth Ski League, a statewide organization with the mission of developing and promoting the participation and enjoyment of cross country skiing for youth and their families.

The program is open to ages 4-15 and is designed for skill levels ranging from beginner to experienced. The organization is a volunteer led organization, with parents and guardians encouraged to participate and learn with the children (No registration is necessary for parents/guardians, and equipment for parents/guardians can be rented at the ski venue each week) For the younger children, parents should plan to be “on the snow” with their children (although not necessarily on skis).

Cross-country skiing provides numerous benefits, including:

  • Great cross-training for fall and summer sports
  • Helps children learn to enjoy the outdoors during winter.
  • Provides a great low-impact, cardiovascular workout
  • Helps learn a life-long sport that can be enjoyed for many years to come.

TIME AND LOCATION

Our group will meet for eight Sunday afternoons in January  and February at either Lebanon Hills ski trails in Eagan from 12:45 - 2:00 if snow conditions are good, or at the Hyland Lake Park Reserve in Bloomington from 11:45 - 1:00 if natural snow is not skiable at Lebanon Hills. Parents and guardians are encouraged to participate either with or without skis. Although skiers will build their skills and learn to enjoy skiing the most by participating each week, there is no problem if scheduling conflicts arise and a skier is unable to attend. 

And just in case you weren't paying attention when reading the above paragraph, we will repeat the fact that if Lebanon Hills does not have enough snow for quality skiing, our sessions will move to Hyland Recreation Area in Bloomington where they have snowmaking equipment. If we have to move to Bloomington, the sessions will be held from 11:45 - 1:00.

EQUIPMENT

A limited amount of ski equipment is available for rental, either for the full season (in which skiers take the skis home each week) or for the weekly sessions only. The fee for the full season rental is $65 ($75 after November 30). The daily rental charged by Lebanon Hills is expected to be $6 per session, while Hyland charges $8 for youth and $12 for adults. We recommend the full season rental so that you have access to the skis for independent use, while also eliminating the need to wait in line each week to a) get fitted and receive the skis, and b) return the skis.

REGISTRATION

The registration fee for the season is $65 ($75 after November 30), and includes membership in the Minnesota Youth Ski League, 8 scheduled ski outings (weather permitting), and a special gift to help keep skiers warm.

ARE THESE SKI LESSONS?

No, these are not ski lessons. The organization is designed to promote and encourage skiing in a positive and supportive environment so that youth can ski with others of similar ability and increase their skills together. Although our volunteer leaders use teaching curriculum with specific learning goals for each group, we prefer to use the term “ski outings” rather than “ski lessons”.  If you are looking for ski lessons, contact the program director to obtain recommendations for private organizations that conduct lessons.

Dave Freed

Program Director

NEWS


The Eastview Girls Nordic Ski Team won the South Suburban Conference Championship at Hyland Park Reserve on Wednesday, Jan 28.

EASTVIEW GIRLS FEATURED IN STAR TRIBUNE

The Eastview High School Girls Nordic Ski Team was recently featured in an article in the Star Tribune.  Click on the link below to read the story.


Kylie Kraemer of Eastview High School

Photos

We have a Shutterfly account that displays photos from our 2014 sessions. We would love to have additional photos from 2015 added!

Click here to gain access.

A Video promoting a similar program

The "Winter Kids" organization in Portland, Maine also has a youth cross-country ski program.  We thought you might enjoy seeing how some of their kids feel about cross-country skiing.

Important Information for Skiing at Hyland