First Steps On The Rink
















From the Publisher, Eileen Majors

Okay, so over the years I have grown a bit shy of outdoor winter sports, opting for another brand of winter fun… like taking over the home fire and keeping the pot of soup going. While everyone else gathers around that winter bonfire in the snow, I admit I have been busy tending to the merriment inside.

This year I am going to venture out a bit more, maybe a ride in the woods on snowmobiles, like I did all the time when I first moved up here. What happened? Could it have been the fact that I was 21 then? I can remember riding half the night, with a dozen or so sleds heading single file into the woods where we would find virtual playgrounds of hills and meadows that lasted for miles.

Then there are the cross-country ski memories. I loved it! Bright sunshine, good friends, a pack of snacks and plenty of views to choose from. This has to be one of my favorite sports. I was into it too, for a while. I kept the skis right by the door, because in our little town, there are lots of times you can glide right down the snow-packed street and plenty of spots to venture out a back door into the woods somewhere.

Downhill skiing is something I felt I needed to learn if I was going to move to the mountains, so I tried and tried and really didn’t enjoy it at all. Several years later, I ventured out to a local family ski hill to watch my kids ski. The experience of Coppervale Ski Hill is quite something in itself with its cozy, small lodge where the fire is going and a large, sunny porch where spectators and skiers share lunches with full view of the mountain’s challenging face. I realized if my four year old could do it, I probably could do it too. Coppervale Ski Hill operator Norm Wilson took some time to show me how.  Much is still the same out there; the fire is going, the picnic tables welcome all and Norm is still  teaching kids to ski (and probably a few moms too).

Ice skating is another great family adventure I’ve been missing out on. Oh, I’ve gone out to watch the kids skating over a shallow, frozen pond on a cold winter’s night while I sat by the fire in wonder. What an adventure! But why haven’t I picked up my own skates yet? There’s no excuse now, especially now, with Chester’s new outdoor ice skating rink open. I know my family will be going, so this year, so will I.

I am getting out there. There are no more excuses. I will start with cross-country skiing and ice skating, I think. One thing for sure though, I’ll still enjoy simmering the soup and tending to the fire inside on many a wintery night.