It’s cool, skip school

This skier


got her holiday wish – snow! Next year I will be more specific so it doesn’t snow on my travel days, only on my ski days.


I have another wish; I wish my kids were younger so they could skip school. The slopes are prime, and under-populated, if you can ski midweek this month.


Maine‘s sister resorts, Sugarloaf and Sunday River, have a steal of a deal for families next week. It’s called Children’s Festival Week, Jan. 11-14. Kids ages 4-12 ski and stay free as well as get free lessons when their parents purchase three or more nights on a ski- and-stay package.



When our kids were little, we would take them out of kindergarten or grade school to ski.


They’re teens now, and high school hooky is severely frowned upon. But there were no long-term educational repercussions from playing hooky when they were in elementary school. My husband and I loved the wide-open midweek slopes and the savings over weekend and holiday pricing. Our kids still remember their instructors at Sugarloaf’s Mountain Magic ski camp, and photos ops with Amos the Moose.


If you can pencil yourself out of work, and entice the kids to play hooky (that shouldn’t be hard), you will find that both Sugarloaf and SundayRiver roll out a roster of family oriented apres ski activities during this week. Fireworks at the family-friendly hour of 8pm, evening games and shows, plus snow tubing and ice skating parties take place throughout Children’s Festival.



At the Monday night Welcome Party, your kids get to shake furry paws with the fuzzy mascots. My daughter was a big fan of the Snow Tiger at SundayRiver, and absolutely adored Blueberry Bear at the Loaf. My husband and I appreciated kids’ movie night – our kids were entertained for a few hours with activities and pizza, so we could enjoy some adult apres sans crayons and sippy cups.



I hope you skip out and get your kids into ski school. They will quickly learn to love the sport like you do. Missed school is easily made up – but not missed opportunity. Convincing your boss you have “powder flu” might be a bit more challenging. 



Heather Burke is our family ski guru. Photos by Greg Burke. For more of Heather’s family ski tips and stories, go to


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