Clinic educates skiers

Published 8:46 am Monday, August 18, 2008

People seeking the thrill of riding the waves on Fountain Lake were given the opportunity Saturday by the Bayside Skiers as part of a “Learn to Ski” class through Community Education.

This summer the Bayside Skiers held put two clinics through Community Education and it allowed new skiers to learn how to ski and others the chance to re-familiarize themselves with the sport.

Neighbors Stephanie Sherman and Maureen Williams-Zelenak took to the waters with their daughters, Claire and Ella, to gain some waterskiing experience courtesy of the Bayside Skiers.

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“The reason why we tried it is because we live on the lake and we want to do more water sports on the lake,” Sherman said. “Claire loves the water so we’re just trying to build up both of our skills.”

For $29, mother and daughter took part in a four-hour clinic designed to build basic waterskiing skills.

“Teaching is a lot of what Bayside is all about,” said instructor and Bayside member Mike Johnson. “We do a lot of land practice first and try to teach them their correct form and what’s going to happen when the boat starts pulling. We normally get kids up within three tries.”

Ella got up on her first try and even mom Maureen was able to get up as well.

“Even I got up and I have only been up once or twice before, many, many years ago,” Maureen said. “I thought it would be fun to go with my daughter. She was willing to give it a whirl, and I thought if she’s willing, I can do it too.”

For the Bayside Skiers it was an opportunity to help pass along their passion of waterskiing.

“It’s fun to bring other people into the sport and give them the chance to do the same thing we love doing every day,” said Bayside Skier Matt Levorson. “It’s been successful this year and we’ve had fun with it.”

The Bayside Skiers held a clinic earlier in the summer that drew 13 people and the clinic on Saturday drew 10 people. The club plans on holding the clinic next summer as well.

“We started slow this year and we said we’d max it out at 16 people, and the first clinic we had 13 and this clinic we had 10 so it worked out perfectly as far as the number of boats and the number of instructors we had,” Johnson said.

The mother-daughter duos enjoyed the idea of learning a sport they can enjoy the rest of their lives — together.

“I wanted to learn more so our whole family can ski,” Sherman said. “I just think it’s a good lifelong sport.”

Getting a glimpse into how the Bayside Skiers work was an added bonus for the daughters who might someday become Bayside Skiers themselves.

“It’s fun to learn more about the Bayside Skiers because we’re out on the lake all the time, so it’s fun to see how this all works for them just to see the dynamics of it,” Sherman said. “Claire thinks she wants to be at the top of the pyramid some day.”

Johnson got the satisfaction of watching people learn the sport.

“You’ve got people learning how to ski, they’re having fun,” Johnson said. “It’s all about the smiles. We had a great time putting the clinic on.”