Despite being one of the school’s most popular clubs, with membership hovering around 100 students each year, many may not realize how much of a time commitment Ski Club is. This year marks the twentieth year Ski Club has been available at McNicholas, and students continue to find reasons to dedicate six hours to the slopes after school on wintry Mondays.
Besides being a time commitment, Ski Club comes with its own set of expenses. “I recommend buying a Perfect North season pass,” Ski Club Moderator Gerard Kissel said. “A Bronze pass is $168 for this season and it’ll get you in any Monday through Thursday for up to eight hours a day. Going once is $70, so the pass pays for itself in time.” Once the price of skiing and snowboarding equipment is added, the price can be quite expensive.
Ski Club requires both a time commitment and monetary funds, but members find that it is a worthwhile use of their time. This is certainly true for seniors Megan Mottola and Connor Nelson, who have both been in the club for four years. Below, they describe an average day in the life of a Ski Club member.
- 7:00-7:40 a.m. – Drop off ski equipment in Mr. Kissel’s office. “When I was a freshman and sophomore, I used to drag my equipment into school on Monday mornings and drop it off in Kissel’s office,” Nelson said. “Now that I’m an upperclassman, it’s easier because I can leave it in my car and just get it after school.”
- 3:00 p.m. – Take roll in gym lobby and board bus. Students have the option to change into warmer clothes either at school or when they get to Perfect North Slopes.
- 3:10 – Leave McNicholas parking lot for Perfect North Slopes. On the bus, students have free time to listen to music, catch up with friends, or work on homework.
- 4:00 – Arrive at Perfect North Slopes. Students who own skiing or snowboarding equipment unload it from the bus. “Anyone who doesn’t own equipment has to rent it and change, which takes even longer,” Nelson said. Once students change and have all the necessary equipment, they are ready to hit the slopes.
- 4:00-7:45 – Free time. “At this point, we’ll say, ‘let’s meet at this place at this time to leave’ and we have the rest of the time to do whatever we want,” Nelson said. “I usually try to snowboard for as long as possible, then I eat dinner halfway through. If the snow isn’t as good, some of us will go tubing after that since we’re exhausted. “Mottola follows a similar schedule as Nelson. “There are around fifteen hills, so we can usually hit most of those and then more advanced kids can try out the ramps and rails before dinner,” Mottola said. Perfect North’s food court offers pizza, burgers, and salads among other options, providing the students with a convenient place to gather for dinner.
- 8:00 – Students board bus and head back to McNicholas. “You spend a whole day at school and then you’re out there standing on the slopes for hours after that, so by the time you go home, you’re ready to sleep,” Mottola said. “Some kids end up taking naps on the way home.”
- 9:00 – Arrive back to the McNicholas parking lot and drive home.
With its packed schedule, Ski Club never fails to leave its members exhausted at the end of the day. “It’s worth it, though,” Mottola said. “You don’t have to be good or know what you’re doing to have fun. It’s a good way to meet new people and get exercise on a Monday.”
Kissel agrees with Mottola’s sentiment. “I’ve been the moderator of this club for twenty years now, and it’s a nice way to start your week,” Kissel said.