Skiers and snowboarders are getting ready to participate in a season full of activities and competitions with Weber State University’s ski and snowboard clubs.

[media-credit name=”McClatchy-Tribune” align=”alignright” width=”200″][/media-credit]On Thursday, about 25 members and newcomers were welcomed to the ski club’s first meeting of the season.

“You don’t have to have any experience to join the team,” said Colleen Garside, the ski club’s faculty adviser. “We will take any level of experience and teach you how to ski.”

The snowboard club holds meetings most Friday nights from 11 p.m. to midnight at Flowrider in downtown Ogden.

“It’s a fun way to meet people who are in the club and get the paperwork done,” said Cody Lee, president of the snowboarding club. “We have a pizza party and it’s 5 bucks to surf. It’s the only real training we do before the season because surfing is pretty close to boarding.”

The ski club will have its own trainer for dry-land training in the coming weeks before members make their first turns on snow.

The snowboard club will also help ring in the new season by hosting a premiere of their own snowboarding film, “Come Out to Play,” along with production company Capita’s film “Defenders of Awesome” on Thursday, Nov. 17. Doors will open for the event at 7:30 p.m. in Ballroom C of the Shepherd Union Building. Admission is free for club members and will cost $2 for the general public.

Both clubs have numerous competitions and events in the upcoming months. Members of the ski club will have a chance to compete with the Intermountain Master’s Association, which hosts competitions throughout the Greater Utah Area. Many races are held at Park City, Snowbasin and Wolf Mountain resorts.

If ski club members perform well in regional competitions, they will be qualified to compete in nationals, which will be hosted in Park City March 19-23.

“Two years ago, five of us qualified for nationals, and we traveled to Sun Valley to compete,” said Josh Stuart, vice president of the ski club. “We did fairly well up there and it was great.”

The ski team also competes in collegiate races against Westminster College, Rocky Mountain College, Brigham Young University and others.

According to Stuart, the ski team has about 30 members. Although not required, roughly half of the members compete. Others who might not feel comfortable competing often assist with the races.

“We have every level, from beginners to advanced skiers,” Stuart said.

The snowboarding team, with approximately 40 members, has 10 that compete in events, including the Burton Am Series and the Gatorade Freeflow.

“If you win the Burton Am series, you are automatically entered into the US Open and don’t have to go through qualifiers,” Lee said. “You can compete with everyone up to the top ranks; it’s an open competition. On the other hand, there is the Dew Tour, which you have to be pretty big to get into. The Gatorade Freeflow is a tool for the younger athletes to work toward that.”

Students can join either group at any time; however, leaders of both clubs recommend people join sooner rather than later because members get good deals on many things, including passes and gear.

Membership in the ski club costs $600 and includes training, a season pass to Snowbasin, racing fees and most travel expenses.

“It’s a pretty stinkin’ good deal,” Garside said.

Membership in the snowboard club costs $25 for active team members, which covers their competition fees, and $10 for general club members. The club offers discount season passes to Park City Ski Resort and Canyons Ski Resort. Discount Day tickets will also be available through WSU’s Outdoor Program.

For more information about either team, students can visit www.weber.edu/ski or www.weber.edu/snowboard .

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