Year-end celebration for Adaptive Sports Sun Peaks brings in new ski training directors

The adaptive sports organization is accepting new gear donations and looking for a treasurer.
A large group of ski instructors wearing green jackets gather for a photo in front of a ski hill. There is a chairlift in the background.
Adaptive Sports Sun Peaks members gather together for a group photo at their annual end-of-year celebration. Photo by Liz McDonald.

This year’s annual event for Adaptive Sports Sun Peaks (ASSP) celebrated the non-profit’s season in style.

The event looked back on the adaptive ski community’s success in Sun Peaks and acknowledged students, instructors, families and supporters. 

Guests enjoyed dinner, a season review and student recognition awards and prizes before honouring outgoing members. 

Among red and white tables with matching balloons, ASSP President Riann Batch highlighted this year’s achievements to a beaming audience that included students, instructors, families and other ASSP members. 

Volunteers recorded 6,150 hours for the season, teaching 77 students with a range of disabilities. The program taught 436 lessons and students spent 874 hours on snow. Active instructors totalled 54 and averaged 20 lessons per person, teaching for 2,574 hours and logging 2,847 training hours. 

Administration logged 663 hours and equipment maintenance hit 166 hours this year.

Students in attendance were awarded medals and certificates by their instructors for the season, and each heard personalized messages about their successes in front of a cheering crowd. Students and their siblings received prizes as well.

During the evening, the outgoing ski training directors for ASSP, Neil and Veronica Connors, were given tributes by the community, with speakers including Mayor Al Raine, ASSP founder Dick Taylor and ASSP vice president Nan Stevens.

Stevens described the work done by ASSP and parents to advocate for people with disabilities. She said “thousands of hours of service” have been engaged by members and over the years ASSP has reached people “provincially, nationally and internationally.”

Neil and Veronica Connors said Sun Peaks and the adaptive sports community will be missed.

“We’re going to miss Sun Peaks, ASSP and all our great friends,” said Neil. 

“[We’ll miss] the beautiful students that we have seen grow from their first time here who come back year after year — seeing their progress and their development is absolutely heartwarming,” Veronica told SPIN.

The incoming ski training directors are Jenny Hawes and Brook Low. The organization is currently seeking a new treasurer.

ASSP is now accepting donations of retired gear that can be dropped off daily at The Grand Ski Valet or from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 15 at Sun Peaks Grand Hotel & Conference Centre.

Email [email protected] or call 250-572-0616 for more information.

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