ST. PAUL - Over the Christmas holidays the Lakeland Cross Country Ski Club experienced a dramatic increase in requests for renting ski equipment.
Originally, the club was going to offer two special days of open rentals for the general public to be used at the St. Paul Golf Course. But, the interest was so high that the club decided to open rentals for a week.
Just about 100 rentals went out to members and general public in that time.
The idea to open rentals to the public over the holidays was "for people to enjoy the trails, discover the fun of skiing as a family and to get outdoors to boost moral," according to Joanne Lamoureux, one of the executive members of the club,
Last year the Lakeland Cross Country Ski Club, which is based out of St. Paul, had two public ski days all season. The club is now hoping to offer more public ski days but is in need of volunteers to run the rentals.
The small inventory of rentals includes 27 pairs of skis, and is available primarily for the ski development programs, and for members who do not have their own ski equipment.
All programs and opportunities offered by the LCCSC is made possible by volunteers - from grooming and track setting the trails, to doing maintenance on snow machines and implements, running the rental shop, waxing skis, putting up trail signage, fundraising, offering programs, and more.
It takes eight hours for a track setter to groom and track-set the trails at the golf course on the front and back nine, each time.
Those involved with the club say they are happy to see so many people enjoy the trails over the holidays season, and would like to thank the Town of St. Paul specifically for use of the golf course for free public skiing ,and for use of the space downstairs at the clubhouse to house the ski rentals. A long list of other supporters also help keep the club operational.
The club would like to remind people to sign in when they use the trails to ensure up to date statistics are kept. The statistics allow the club to access funding.
The club would also like to remind skiers to stay on the trails at the golf course. As of Friday, the club was not recommending skiers head out to the WengzynowSKI Ranch trails due to icy conditions. But, the conditions at the golf course trails were excellent heading into the weekend.