Thank you to the many donors and supporters since 2012 including the estate of Camille Toner, the Association of Saskatchewan Urban Parks and Conservation Agencies, the Saskatoon Community Foundation and this year Kay Nasser, Meewasin has been able to offer the interpretive program to schools and other organized groups, the success of it this year all dependent on a yet to experience good snowfall.
Since 1979, cross-country skiing has been encouraged at the Beaver Creek Conservation Area (BCCA) but never facilitated. In 2010 the warm-up facility formerly located at the Cameco Meewasin Skating Rink @Nutrien Plaza was relocated to BCCA to provide space for programming and a warm-up facility for winter activity.
The warm-up facility, refurbished and renamed Chip's Lodge, was placed beside the present interpretive centre on already disturbed ground. This provides the perfect venue for a ski lodge warmup facility, complete with skis in sizes for all ages and a wood-burning stove for interpretive cross-country ski programs to utilize. Please note that the ski equipment is for instructional group programming only and that Meewasin does not rent or lend ski equipment to the general public at this time.
From February 13 to March 29, 2108, Beaver Creek Conservation Area offered 17 dates for the Cross-Country Ski & Nature Program to Saskatoon Public and Saskatoon Greater Catholic Grades 5-8. 399 Students particpated in the program. 39 First Nations, and other nationalities including Mexican, Philipino, East Indian, Chinese and Japanese. Thank you to Kay Nasser, The Association of Saskatchewan Urban Parks and Conservation Agencies, and the Community Initiatives Fund for financing the program.
During the 2012-2013 winter season three cross country ski pilots were conducted on site at BCCA with students from the Greater Catholic and Saskatoon Public school systems. Ten pilots were completed in the 2013-2014 winter season. During the 2014-15 ski season, 17 youth and school groups participated in this program. The 2015-2016 ski season has finished with 469 ski participants enjoying the interpretive ski program. The 2016-2017 winter programmed for a total of 16 groups who experienced the program. These included: 135 teenages (12-16), 288 children (6-11), 42 Adults and 3 Seniors. Other statistics: First Nation (81), Metis (25), Newcomers to Canada (30), Female (228) and Male (240). Total overal 465.
Ski Trail Update: With the loss of our cross-country ski interpretive guide due to budget cuts, combined with the lack of snow as of mid January 2018, Meewasin will not be engaging a snow toboggan and groomer this year for the Beaver Creek Conservation Area ski trail. If we do see a snowfall, Meewasin interpreters coordinating the program will set out trails manually integrating manual trail development into the interpretive program.