Blog & Buzz,  Sports

What Makes Burke Mountain The Ultimate Family-Friendly Ski Destination and Mom’s Pick for Locals and NEK Visitors

Whether Burke Mountain Resort is in your backyard or you live a few towns away–or perhaps you’re reading this post and thinking, where the heck is Burke Mountain anyway?–you simply must read on for the ULTIMATE Mom (and Dad) Scoop on Burke Mountain Resort.

With a mission of trying to understand what makes Vermont’s very own Burke Mountain a stand out place for families, NEK Moms caught up with Burke Mountain’s Hannah Collins (Marketing and Events Manager) via email.

Here’s What Collins Says about Burke Mountain….

NEK Moms: Can you briefly tell a bit about yourself, your position & responsibilities at Burke Mountain Resort?

Collins: My name is Hannah Collins and I am the Marketing and Events Manager here at Burke Mountain.  I plan and coordinate all of our marketing campaigns and events here on the mountain.  I have been here about 10 years and started out as a ski instructor here for the season long children’s program.

NEK Moms: What does Burke Mountain Resort offer local NEK Moms (and Dads)?

Collins:  One of our best days for NEK moms and dads are Sunday Afternoons.  Our Ski & Ride NEK style Sundays (non-holiday) allow everyone half-day lift tickets for $20, half day rentals for $20, and group lessons for $20.  We have been running this promotion for about 12 years! It gives all families a chance to spend family time out in the fresh air, on the mountain doing something active together.

NEK Moms:  Do you offer any incentives to get local parents and kids on the mountain?  Any ideas to help make it affordable for local parents?

Collins:  Our school program for local children and schools provides skiing & riding a very steep discount.  We provide skiing & riding to over 50 area schools as  part of their physical education program.   Every afternoon once a week, children, teachers and parents arrive at Burke for skiing & riding lessons.  This allows all children to participate in a great winter sport, and also gives parents to take a break out of work and volunteer to be a chaperone.

NEK Moms: Is getting more local parents to Burke one of your goals–and related to this, how does Burke Mountain support the local NEK community?

Collins:  We also offer the Kingdom Pass to all students in the Northeast Kingdom.  This hugely discounted season pass starts out at just $199 for all students age 6-24 attending school in the Northeast Kingdom.  This pass is valid anytime and has no restrictions!  We are also a big part of Kingdom Kids.  Kingdom Kids is a non-profit organization that provides season passes, and season long equipment rentals to children in the NEK who could not otherwise afford it.  Their website it www.kingdomkids.us We also donate hundreds of lift tickets for local raffles, auctions, and fundraisers each year.

NEK Moms:  If there’s one thing that makes Burke Mountain the perfect family-friendly mountain, what is it?

Collins:  Just the layout of the mountain is ideal for families.  The lower mountain is very distinctly separated from the upper mountain, allowing a nice family friendly lower area with beginner trails, the terrain park, a beginner glade, and the high speed quad, which allows for lots of runs for the kids.  The Base Lodge is a perfect meeting place at the end of the day and is small enough that you can keep track of the whole family.  We also have a wide variety of children’s on snow programs, which frees up mom and dad for a few hours to take some Upper Mountain runs!

NEK Moms:  For the newbie, downhill (alpine) skiing or snowboarding and the whole mountain experience can seem somewhat intimidating, what do you offer to make that first experience comfortable and to keep parents and kids coming back again and again?

Collins:  This year we are offering a great come back discount for beginner skiers and riders.  We will give you $10 off the next lesson for filling out a short survey about your lesson.  We have also installed a Magic Carpet this year which brings beginner skiers and riders up the beginner hill faster and is a lot easier than using the J-Bar for the first time.  Adults and children will learn much faster.  We also are a Burton Learn to Ride Center.  We have a full line of specially designed Burton snowboards that are made just for beginners, making the learning curve a lot shorter.

NEK Moms:  How can Burke Mountain Resort help with local moms’ New Years’ fitness resolutions?

Collins:  Take advantage of discounted days like Sunday Afternoons, and other lift ticket promotions like the Vermonter Ticket, which is $45 Sunday-Friday and get out on the slopes!  We also offer discounted group rates!

NEK Moms: There’s local buzz about Burke Mountain someday becoming a four-season resort, with attractions that will bring tourists and locals to the Mountain year-round.  Are there any parent/kid-friendly project plans in the works?  What do you offer now that might appeal to families during the other seasons?

Collins: The Burke Mountain Campground offers very affordable camping for the family.  Take a drive to the summit of Burke by driving up the toll road for just $5 per car.  New last fall we now also run the chairlift on weekends and holidays for lift served mountain biking and scenic chairlift rides from the Sherburne Express.  The newly constructed mountain bike park by Kingdom Trails is also accessible from the chairlift along with 3-4 other trails from the chairlift.  Mountain bike clinics and bike rentals are available at www.ideride.com

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So, NEK Moms and Dads, what do you heart about Burke Mountain?  What about Burke doesn’t rock your world and what could be done to make it a better family experience?

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