AW Ski/Snowboard Club Wraps Up Successful Season

The Anthony Wayne Ski/Snowboard Club made a trip to Winter Park Ski Resort in Colorado in January. During the trip, 29 inches of snow fell, making it some of the best skiing the club members have experienced. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE ANTHONY WAYNE SKI AND SNOWBOARD CLUB

BY KAREN GERHARDINGER | MIRROR REPORTER — When Matthew Rosskopf joined the Anthony Wayne Ski/Snowboard Club, he had only hit the slopes a few times. 

“It doesn’t matter if you are good at skiing or you are incredible,” said the high school senior. “Everyone is included. The benefit of the club is that you ski with other members of your school.”

Since joining, Matthew said he’s gained new skills and confidence in skiing.

“My friends and the chaperones have taken their time to teach me how to become a better skier,” he said.

Evan Stigall, president of the club, agrees.

“When I joined, I was an OK skier, but as I went on more ski trips, I got a lot better,” the senior said.

The Anthony Wayne Ski/Snowboard Club, an Anthony Wayne Youth Foundation club sport, is open to Anthony Wayne High School students every January through March, said club advisor Scott Stigall. 

Each year, the high school students, along with parents and chaperones, head out on weekend trips to ski and snowboard. This year’s trips included Shanty Creek Resort in Bellaire, Mich., Holiday Valley Ski Resort in Ellicottville, N.Y., and Winter Park Ski Resort in Colorado a final trip was scheduled for Boyne Mountain in Michigan this weekend but was canceled because of lack of snow. 

“The season has been chaotic. With a sport like skiing and snowboarding, we are dependent on the weather,” Scott said. “This winter has been very interesting with regard to snowfall and temperatures.”

While the trip to Shanty Creek almost got canceled due to lack of snow and temperatures, the students got out and had a wonderful time, he said. A smaller group headed to Winter Park, where the skiing was phenomenal, despite the temperatures hitting 10 below zero, Scott said.

“We got about 29 inches of snow while out there. It was an amazing and very memorable experience for the kids,” he said.

Matthew and Evan said the Winter Park trip was their favorite.

“The skiing was incredible. We got to stay an extra two days in Colorado because the only path back to the airport was blocked by an avalanche,” Matthew explained.

“The conditions were absolutely amazing, and the opportunity to spend a weekend rooming with some of my closest friends and skiing in knee-deep powder is one I’ll never forget,” Evan said.

The beauty of the club is that students who might not otherwise have an opportunity to learn to ski or snowboard can do so with guidance from their peers, adult chaperones and in lessons at the resorts, which all offer lessons.

“To learn the sport is very specific to the individual. I always tell the beginners that you are going to fall; the boots are going to be tight and hurt your feet; the skis are going to be difficult to control; and then we’re going to make you go down a hill while dealing with all that,” Scott said. 

“You embrace that and you will be fine. It really has a lot to do with your attitude and wanting to learn and knowing that it will take a while.”

The club has grown in size over the years. At first it was tough getting 25 students, but now Scott is hoping to see it grow to more than 52 students – the number that fit on a charter bus. 

A more important measure of success, however, is in watching the students trying out a new sport and learning to love it, he said. While most prefer to ski, he’s also seen students try out and master snowboarding.

The 2025 season launches in January, so sign-ups will open up this fall. For more information, visit https://awyf.sportngin.com/awski or email awskiclub@awyf.org.

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