Ahead of the winter season, the National Winter Activity Center is Winter4Kids. Winter4Kids is programs, a facility (National Winter Activity Center) and the most committed and passionate team of individuals. It offers mentoring, meals, equipment and experiential winter learning for school age youth. Still located in Vernon, NJ, The National Winter Activity Center is the nation’s only 501(c)(3) nonprofit winter facility, dedicated to improving the lives of youth through winter activity. The aim is to leverage the “dark days of winter” and challenge the children to be much more active. This season Winter4Kids will accommodate almost 3,100 youth.
From new lifts and trails, to an upgraded lodge along with state of the art, fully automated snowmaking, Winter4Kids welcomes a host of new upgrades. With the addition of a Nordic Center in 2019 and a 27,700 square foot lodge addition complete with full kitchens, expanded equipment rooms and a cafeteria coming online during the summer of 2020, the program and venue will be poised to accommodate 10,000 kids annually by 2023.
“The goal for the National Winter Activity Center has always been to increase access to incremental, life changing, winter activity in children across the country. Through Winter4Kids, our original vision remains the same as aspects of the vision have been amplified,” said Schone Malliet, Founder and CEO of Winter4Kids. “At our core, winter activities are a means to end for the kids, and our programs makes unimaginable dreams inevitable opportunities.”
Winter4Kids program school age youth receive experiential learning, life changing values from coaching mentors and are provided with the appropriate equipment, clothing and healthy meals over the course of six sessions.
∙ Nordic Center – Fully deployed this year, the Nordic Center features a 1.5KM loop with snowmaking and lights, supported by a new lodge with eating, equipment and storage areas. In conjunction with the Norwegian Ski Federation and Winter4Kids board member, Helen Ingebretsen, a “ski play” component has been developed for fun freestyle runs.
∙ Winter Activity Club – Participating in programs will cultivate young enthusiasts who return year over year, have a love for the outdoors, and a desire to sustain their progress. An annual trip with parents and guardians is planned.
∙ Team Winter4Kids – This program molds young athletes by supporting events and activities that are recreational, organized (US Ski and Snowboard), and interscholastic (NJISRA and USCSA). The development of the competition facilities supports high level Alpine and Nordic events as well. This year, we will host a NOR AM Cup Parallel Slalom event, as well as Regional FIS competitions with US Ski & Snowboard.
“We’re being very intentional about being a resource for the winter sports community,” said Malliet. “Embracing a love for the outdoors, while acquiring skills, our participants look forward to new opportunities for their lives. Improving health, better attendance in school and the joy of new perspectives creates inflection points for these kids. We make a difference!”
For more information about Winter4Kids, please visit www.winter4kids.org.