You can see it in their eyes. Bend’s skiers and snowboarders are getting twitchy. They’re donning wool caps, gazing at the sky, and asking each other important questions like, “is that a snow cloud?” and “when will Mt. Bachelor open?” and “do these ski pants make my butt look big?”

Opening Day at Mt. Bachelor is always a moving target. Still, we know it’s just a matter of days, so here are a few things you can do before it’s time to don those goggles.

 

Snag some $25 lift tickets for a good cause

Each year, Mt. Bachelor does the Ski for Schools fundraiser to generate cash for local education. Between Nov. 1 and Nov. 25, you can purchase $25 lift tickets that can be used November 28 through December 2 at Mt. Bachelor. Tickets are limited and won’t be sold at the Mt. Bachelor ticket office, so go here to find out where you can score some.

All proceeds go to the foundations for Bend-La Pine and Redmond schools, and the fundraiser has generated more than $100,000 over the last six years. Don’t forget – you must purchase your tickets by November 25 to take advantage of this sweet deal!

 

Free nights of lodging? Free skiing for kids?

Sounds too good to be true, right? Well pinch yourself, because you aren’t dreaming – you really can get hooked up with amazing lodging deals and free ski passes for kids. Check out the Visit Bend specials page to find out about all the fabulous ski-and-stay packages in Bend this winter. Book early so you’re sure to get the dates and deals you want!

 

Try some winter fun with Fido

Want to frolic in the snow without leaving your pooch behind? Give skijoring a shot! From 6-7:30   p.m. on Tuesday, November 29, Bend’s REI (located in the Old Mill District) is partnering with local canine outfitter Ruff Wear to offer a free introductory skijoring class.

Er, what’s skijoring?

In a nutshell, it’s cross country skiing while being pulled by your pooch. The Ruff Wear representative will share tips and techniques, plus offer a hands-on demo of the new Ruff Wear Omnijor Joring System.

While you aren’t allowed to bring your dog to the introductory class, there are plenty of other places around Bend for you to enjoy a little winter play with your canine companion. Go here for a great list of ideas.

You can register online for the introduction to skijoring. Hurry – spots are limited!

 

Ski or ride in 5

Are you a never-ever skier or snowboarder who’s always wanted to try it? Bachelor’s Ski or Ride in 5 progam is a great way to get your feet wet! For $199, you get five lessons, equipment rental, and reserved close-in parking in the Sunrise Lodge lot. You also score a free season pass (or 12 day pass if you’re over 19) and get a discount on season passes and equipment for the next couple years.

The program is only for people with no experience trying to learn to ski or snowboard. Out of towners can easily make use of it during a five-day trip or a couple weekend visits. The packages make excellent gifts for birthdays, Christmas, Hanukkah, or National Square Dance Day (what? It’s November 29. Aren’t you celebrating?)

Preregistration is required, and participants can begin lessons anytime after January 2, 2012. Lessons must be completed by March 26.

So what are YOU doing to get ready for winter recreation? Please share!

I’ll be busy doing a snow dance in my front yard. Anyone have an extra scarf I can borrow?

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