Xtreme Team: marketing & feeding the competitive programs
The Xtreme Team is the brainchild my buddy Bob’s wife Jane. Her many years of work and support has produced a unique success tale of skiing, instruction, coaching, camaraderie, and fun that has carried the Buffalo Ski Club to new area heights.
It was intended among other things, as, a feeder for our racing program and freestyle program. The first season we had just over 40 kids, ages 5-14 engaged in a full Saturday of instruction and fellowship. It a “day-camp” experience starting at 10, breaking for lunch around the Sitzmarker Lodge fire-place and continuing on for recreational and even more intrepid adventures. Jane inter-wove crafts, hikes, s’mores, a talent contest, scavenger hunts, a sleep-over and infinitely more “what-not’s”.
The first year went well: a few glitches, an occasional bump, a few minor crashes, but no permanent injures, no real casualties, plenty of fun, lots a memories and tons of compliments and even commendations. So we did it again the next year. And it exploded
It grew and grew to about 150 kids even as we narrowed the age to twixt 6 and 12. More parents were grafted in as volunteers. We added a weekly training clinic under the leadership on the venerated instructors Jack and Virginia who standardized, streamlined and advanced our coaching crew. We regularly draft in clinicians from both racing and freestyle.
Recognizing another niche: the benefits acrue
And another feature of “Apprentice” evolved. Natural leaders, those older kids who chose not to graduate into racing or freestyle are recruited as our assistants. They apprentice – volunteer – for a season in expectation they will advance to the league or certified instructors. And we have some very worthy, effective instructors.
We consider ourselves as doing a good job. Some parents see us as a very in-expensive baby-sitters. Many in the ski school wonder what the heck we are. Our specialty programs credit us as , a good “food” provider. Our supportive, loyal parent volunteers acknowledge enslavement can be enjoyable. And Jane’s husband, Bob bands us a “cult.” (I prefer “subculture” as more appropriate and accurate.)
The scope, shadow, and effect
The truth is if you total the number of kids with we the coaches, consider our cooperative spouses/partners, add the apprentices, graft in the parents, reckon the supportive BSC staff, multiply by the family, friends and relative factor and compound the many years of good times, you grasp the size and have begun to fathom the influence of Jane’s “little” Xtreme concept.
I know it will be time to retire when our one of our “Xtreme” graduates enrolls their first child. Time marches on. Oh my gosh, it will be an Xtreme Team “grandchild”!
Nice work, Jane, Jack, Virginia and all the others who have given so much to this program and our club.
Hey, we own it. Now, ski it and enjoy it.