Written by: Kaitlyn Farrington
Photos by: Tal Roberts
Before the Slumber Party began we got an offer from Corey Smith (a friend of mine from Ketchum) to go up to his cabin Wintertux, which is up north by Smiley Creek, but still in Ketchum. It ended working out perfect because all the pro girls I had brought out were stoked and it was a good start to the weekend! We just went up there for two nights three days and we toured around and rode a little bit of spring hot powder, the powder wasn’t anything special, but it was a nice trip before we embarked on the weekend with all the young girls! And of course, you know we had a lot of good laughs!
We had about 20 snowboard girls that signed up, two skiers and two “token” boys as we called them. (The boys knew what they were doing! Signing up to ride with 20 girls.) The first day we just had a meet and greet where we made s’mores so that the kids could get acquainted with the pros: Hana Beaman, Elena Hight, Maddy Schaffrick, Rebecca “Possum” Torr, Stefi Luxton, and Barrett Christy. Saturday came along, and oh man, did we have some high energy going throughout all the kids and the pros. We started at 9 am with Elena leading us off with a little stretching session to get the kids limbered up. From there we broke off into groups and rode around Dollar Mountain with all of the little girls. Snow Park Technologies and Sun Valley did a great job with the park and there was something for everybody to ride and that was what was most important! We had girls hitting boxes for the first time and hitting mini booters for the first time! The energy was so high that I could barely keep up and I’ve got a lot of energy!
Everytime I walked in the lodge to take either a water break or a little snack break, kids would run up and asked to take the chair with me. Of course I couldn’t say no. I probably rode from 9:30am till 3:30pm that day, one of the longest shred days I’ve had in a while! It was so amazing to see the level of excitement and happiness on every kids face! All of the pros worked really well with the kids and both kids and pros all seemed to enjoy themselves.
After riding that day we all went and had a pizza party and we gave some awards out, we gave a couple GNU snowboards out to the girls who were having 100% FUN! If you can’t tell 100% FUN is my catchphrase! One of the snowboards went to a girl named Hattie, she told all of the pros girls throughout the day “that she was so excited and will never forget this day because she got to ride with all of the pros!” It was awesome to hear because that’s what this camp was all about. Inspiring these young girls to not be intimidated when they’re up on the mountain and just have fun riding. Mission accomplished!
After the pizza party we all went ice-skating, and oh boy was ice-skating fun! I think throughout the day the kids had been drinking monster so everybody had a lot of energy and then we had three hours on the rink to ourselves. We had all sorts of shenanigans going on we were doing Congo lines, making snake circles, we made up dances, played red light green light. Red light green light was great because must of us couldn’t stop so it was more of falling down to stop when “red” was called, and at one point we were belting out “let it go” as we all ran around the ice! Ice-skating was awesome because it put everybody on the same level, the kids were even teaching the pros all the ice dancing moves!
On Sunday we all met on Baldy where we all went to go take a lap on my run “Kaitlyn’s Bowl” as a group! It was fun to have everybody see that I actually do have a run on the mountain and it’s not just a myth. Haha “Kaitlyn’s Bowl” I would say attracts more skiers than boarders, but that day to see 25 rippers shredding down it, was one for the books! Compared to Saturday the energy was really low. Some parents even said the kids had Monster Energy hangovers. After riding a couple runs on Baldy we went back over to Dollar to ride some pipe and hit jumps. It was super warm and there puddles everywhere so we started pond skimming too! All in all everybody had a blast! As the day came to a close kids kept telling me that they “…will never forget this weekend! Parents came up to us and said that their children had done summer camps with some of the pros before, but this was completely different. My friends and I learned everyone’s name and actually interacted with the kids. It wasn’t the kids chasing the pros down the mountain it was my friends and I chasing kids down the mountain! Another parent complimented me and thanked me for the weekend, she said it “turned my daughters snowboarding around 100% and I feel that she looks at it more now as fun and not just about competition.” For me that’s exactly what I wanted this camp to be about just having 100% FUN!
I think it was important for this weekend to happen, it shows the next generation that they don’t have to be intimidated when there’s all the guys on the mountain, that they can do whatever they want and feel confident in their riding! The weekend was so fun, I felt like I was 11 years old again and at times I felt like I was chasing the groms down the mountain!
Here’s what some of my friends had to say about it too:
There’s nothing better than riding in spring conditions and sunshine with a bunch of good friends and ripping grommets! The slumber party weekend was 100% fun! – Stefi Luxton
The slumber party is such an amazing way for all of us to connect and give back to this next generation of snowboarders! It was so cool to be able to shred with the girls that are up and coming and hopefully inspire them to keep dreaming big, and help grow their love for this sport that we are all so passionate about. – Elena Hight
Kaitlyn’s Slumber Party was 100% fun for everyone involved! Young and old, all of us were energized by the party atmosphere and we all learned from each other! – Barrett Christy
You can checkout another recap of the event over on Snowboarder Magazine. Read it HERE.