The Stowe Ski and Ride ─ Women In Motion or WIM program ended in 2008 leaving a huge hole in the women’s ski community. A women-centered active and supportive group of women ─ who had participated in the WIM one-week events ─ had forged bonds that they did not want to see end. WIM refugees were looking for something sustainable to fill this void.
At the same time, we saw that nationwide many ski mountain communities had thriving women’s programs. Stowe Ski and Ride School did not have a champion to fight for this despite high demand by women for a chance to meet and ski with like-minded women.
What to do… what to do?
So in 2013, we e-mailed women we knew who enjoyed winter in all its facets in Stowe and organized a ski day with friends which led to a Stowe Reporter article. We posted on Facebook and created a newsletter and asked everyone if they knew more women like us…
And it snowballed !! These simple e-mails and Facebook posts led to “ski-togethers” and social events nearly every week which led to…customized Ski and Ride School performance clinics for all levels and abilities……day trips to Jay Peak and outings for upwards of 70 women…
And snowballed even more!! Our own après ski parties supported by curious MoMs ─ WoW upside down ─ Men of the Mountain ─ and hosted by Stowe restaurants with complimentary appetizers and raffle prizes donated by local businesses…and the WoW ski bum team won the 2013 race final !!
We filled a need that we only suspected was there !! We found comradery, new energy and desire to enjoy our beautiful mountain and wonderful community. Staying active and in shape no matter what age and helping others to do the same.
We did it simply through Facebook, e-mail, newsletters, and word-of-mouth. By collecting a nominal amount from the initial 70 WoW participants we paid for expenses. Our events were staffed by all volunteers and we were embraced by a welcoming business community. The Stowe Reporter article brought curiosity, attention, awareness and new friends.
Part of our mission is to give back, and we designed and sold over 50 signature WoW hats and gators as a co-fundraiser for Nepalese school Kosydekh. We made a donation to FOSAS (Friends of Stowe Adaptive Sports), helped staff the Rotary Oktoberfest and marched in the Stowe summer parade. And on one sunny morning, WoW volunteers cleaned up the Rec Path.
For winter season 2014 –15, WoW established a scholarship fund for local girls to race with the Mt. Mansfield Ski Club through the Mt. Mansfield Education Foundation. By doing so, WoW has created a legacy to encourage and instill the lifelong love of winter sports in as many young girls as possible.
Whatever...Women of Winter * WoW !!