Yes, it’s August and it’s been hot and humid. But winter will be here soon enough, and that means breaking out the skis and snowboards for another season of fun in the snow.
Snow sports fans in the Brattleboro area have it good, with the excellent nordic ski trails run by the Brattleboro Outing Club and the Brattleboro Ski Hill at Living Memorial Park.
The nonprofit group that runs the ski hill, Living Memorial Snow Sports, is already thinking about the coming season and making the hill ready.
Summer is the time when the annual state inspections of the ski tow take place, which are not cheap. Likewise for the routine maintenance to the ski tow that is necessary to keep it safe and functional.
The group has also had to deal with two major expenses this year. The first was what they describe as a “catastrophic failure” of their snowmaking pump and its associated electrical system. The second one is pending, a major overhaul of their Bombardier Groomer that is turning out to be much more expensive than first planned.
The board of Living Memorial Snow Sports tries to be as frugal as possible, and they say they have gotten by to this point with grants, donations, and dipping into their dash reserves. In the end, it takes around $30,000 a season to keep the hill operational.
That’s why Living Memorial Snow Sports is starting its fundraising for the 2021-22 season early this year.
Zach Rounds and Hannah Zeff, two of the many volunteers who keep the hill running each season, started a GoFundMe page at www.gofundme.com/f/ski-hill-groomer-and-snowmaking-expenses, with a goal of $5,000. If you don’t want to donate online, you can send a check to Living Memorial Snow Sports, P.O. Box 1945, Brattleboro, VT 05302.
One thing Living Memorial Snow Sports is not planning to do is raise the lift ticket price. It’s still $5 a day, a real bargain in age when a daily lift ticket to one of the major ski resorts can set you back as much as $200.
Nearly all the small ski hills in Vermont, the places where local skiers and riders got their first taste of the sport, are gone. Affordable places like the Brattleboro Ski Hill are critically important to keeping snow sports alive for everyone, and not just for the folks with deep pockets.
You can find out more about the ski hill and its history at www.brattski.org.
Fall practices begin in Vermont
• Speaking of the change in seasons, with the Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl now in the books, the calendar has turned to the fall high school sports season in Vermont.
Pre-season football practice began on Aug. 16 in Vermont, while field hockey, cross country, and boys’ and girls’ soccer teams can start practicing on Aug. 19.
The Brattleboro football team will scrimmage against Keene, N.H., on Aug. 24 at 5 p.m., at Keene’s Alumni Stadium. The Colonels open the 2021 season at home against Bellows Falls on Sept. 3 at 7 p.m.
Boys’ soccer and field hockey open on Sept. 4 with the Colonel boys hosting Green Mountain and the field hockey team going to Brandon to face Otter Valley. The Colonels girls’ soccer opens its season in Bennington on Sept. 9 in the opening game of the Lady Patriot Tournament against host team Mount Anthony.
Sportsmen Inc. offers hunter safety classes
• The start of the fall hunting seasons in Vermont are just a few weeks away. If you are new to the sport, taking a hunter safety course is must.
Vermont’s hunter education instructors are now holding a limited number of courses throughout the state. A person must pass the hunter education course before they can purchase their first hunting license. Also, a Vermont hunter education card entitles you to hunt in all 50 states, as well as some international locations.
Sportsmen Inc., located at 2215 Creamery Rd. in Guilford, is offering the Vermont Hunter-Bowhunter combination course. Completion of the course means you will be certified in both disciplines.
Indoor classes, led by Don Rosinski, will take place from 7 to 9 p.m. on Sept. 7, 8, 10, 13, 15, and 17 at the clubhouse. Two outdoor training days, led by Herb Meyer, will take place on Sept 25 and 26 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Class size for both classes is limited to 20 people and participants must attend all six indoor classes, or both outdoor classes, to receive their hunter education card. If you are not fully vaccinated, plan to wear a mask while you are inside the clubhouse. Youth under 16 will require a signed parental permission form.
Other courses around the state will be listed as they become available on Vermont Fish and Wildlife’s website, www.vtfishandwildlife.com.
Running for a cause
• The Windham County Safe Place Child Advocacy Center will host its second annual 5K run and fundraiser on Oct. 2 at 9:30 a.m. Join them either virtually or at the Harris Hill Ski Jump in Brattleboro to run the trails while supporting Windham County survivors of physical and sexual violence.
“Your participation will enable our trauma support group for teen girls to continue as well as help us start a new group for caregivers,” the center said in a news release. “Both groups are incredibly important parts of our program as they support our families who are navigating the aftermath of sexual and physical violence.”
Formed more than a decade ago, the mission of Safe Place Child Advocacy Center “is to reduce trauma to survivors of physical and sexual violence by providing a safe environment for individuals to talk with professionals about their experience. In support of this mission, Safe Place and our partners assist survivors in opening an investigation and facilitating support services so that they may start on the path toward healing.”
Senior bowling roundup
• Week 16 of the spring/summer season of the Brattleboro Senior Bowling League on Aug. 12 at Brattleboro Bowl saw the race for first place get much tighter. Team 2 (52–28) had another 1-4 week and now just has a two-game lead on second place Team 6 (50-30), which had a 5-0 week.
Team 4 (43.5-35.5) had a 4-1 week to move into third place, followed by Team 7 (42-38), Team 5 (41-39), Team 1 (35.5-44.5), and Team 3 (30-50).
Roberta Parson had the women’s high handicap game (226) and Carol Gloski had the high handicap series (632). Warren Corriveau Sr. had the men’s high handicap game (239) and series (665). Team 2 had the high team handicap game (854) and Team 4 had the high handicap series (2,412).
In scratch scoring, Corriveau led the men with a 605 series that featured games of 219 and 213. Marty Adams had a 200 game as part of his 548 series, and Jerry Dunham had a 533 series with a 191 game.
Gloski had the high scratch game (173) and series (488) to lead the women. Shirley Aiken had a 170 game.
• The fall league season will be starting in a few weeks, and the Brattleboro Recreation & Parks Senior Center and Brattleboro Bowl say they will be continuing to offer the Senior Bowling League on Thursday mornings, beginning at 9 a.m.
This league is for anyone 50 years old and older and everyone from beginners to experts are welcome to join this friendly and fun bowling league. The fee is $10 for three games. For more information, contact Nancy Dalzell at 802-722-4020.
Looking for a few good reporters
• The Commons can’t be everywhere but, with your help, we can provide even more complete coverage of the sports scene in Windham County.
Are you a student at BUHS, Leland & Gray, Twin Valley, or Bellows Falls? You can be a correspondent and write about your school’s varsity sports programs.
Over the past decade, The Commons has published the work of dozens of students in every section of our paper, and we love training young people to be writers. If you’re willing to put in the effort, we can help improve your writing skills.
Also, since we’re a nonprofit institution, you may be able to use your time with us to fulfill your community service requirements for graduation.
Interested? Send me a query letter and some writing samples to firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll get back to you quickly.
And, putting on my news editor’s hat, if you would rather write about your community or the arts scene instead of sports, we would still love to hear from you.
Are you a coach or athletic director at the aforementioned schools, or a proud parent or relative of a student-athlete? Send along your information or story ideas to email@example.com or call 888-511-5150, ext. 701, and we’ll do our best to get it into the paper.