The SnowSports Academy of Boyne Mountain and Boyne Highlands Resorts in the northwestern Lower Peninsula is known for its Snow Pros, the Austrian instructors behind the Boyne “Guaranteed Learn to Ski or Ride” lessons. Downhill ski instruction options for kids ages three and up to teens and adults range from group to private lessons, Ski Camps for the kids and a 5-day ski package for adults.
Boyne is home of the only Burton Learn to Ride Center in the Eastern Great Lakes Region, and separate classes designed for teens and adults and kids include use of the latest Burton snowboard gear. Also at Boyne, the Family Adventure Lessons are tailored to the snow sport interests and skill levels of your group. Skiers and boarders with more experience will improve their skills with the Freestyle Progression Sessions, and those downhillers with a need for speed can choose from a range of race clinics, camps and programs. If you’d rather glide across fields and along wooded trails check out the private, group and guided tour lesson options at the Boyne Mountain and Boyne Highlands Cross Country Centers.
One thing is clear at Crystal Mountain Resort & Spa in Thompsonville: The Snowsports School is cool. Start with the professional instructors, and look at the tailored programs and dedicated “beginners only” Totem Park Learning Center. The safe and friendly terrain for novice skiers and snowboarders even has special Wonder Carpet surface lifts to convey you uphill. One-on-one and semi-private lessons range from one-to-three hours. Experienced skiers can join the Open Race Clinics or benefit from private race lessons, giant slalom and slalom training.
Crystal’s Adventure Cubs Ski and Snowboard programs get kids as young as three out in the white stuff at the Mountain Adventure Zone. Crystal Kids classes are geared to the 7-12 year old set, and private lessons are also an option. New this year is the Nanny McSki Doorstep Program, which pairs certified instructors trained in childcare for a day of fun and skiing or snowboarding lessons.
Take a private or semi-private lesson in downhill or cross country skiing or snowboarding at the Snowsports Academy at Shanty Creek Resorts (Summit, Schuss and Cedar River) in Bellaire. The NASTAR race clinic includes instruction and runs, and is offered daily. At Shanty Creek, kids learning to ski are Snow Stars (5-6 year olds), Snow Comets (3-4 year olds) and Snow Angels (4-6 year olds in a more individualized class). Older kids are Smart Riders and there is also a daylong or half-day Kids’ Academy.
You can also enroll in private, semi—private and group lessons at Caberfae Peaks in Cadillac, including the Cabby Kids full and half day programs, and ski and snowboard instruction at Treetops Resort near Gaylord.