Snowboarders enjoy slopes in Squaw Valley
Some people enjoy summer, others enjoy winter. Summer: time to go outside, to wear tank tops and shorts, to go swimming and enjoy the sun. On the contrary, during the winter one wants to be stay in and avoid the cold. Activities may be different but that doesn’t mean one can’t enjoy the winter. And those who want to enjoy winter should go to G-4 on Wednesdays to be part of the Snowboarding Club.
It all began eight years ago. After all of its year on campus, it still haven’t been discovered by many students. Advisor Ron Tankersley admits it was really difficult to organize trips this year. The first trip that was scheduled was unfortunately cancelled.
“Parents were worried students were going too far,” Tankersley said.
A lot of paperwork had to be done in order for students to go to Squaw Valley, a trip planned for Sunday, Jan. 29. As Squaw Valley is only two hours away from Stockton, members were required to pay only $30 to cover the expenses for equipment, direct instruction, training and lessons.
“I only ask students for the minimum. The money asked covers their breakfast and gas money,” Tankersley said. Despite the small amount of money, a sport like snowboarding is considered expensive and exclusive. “Snowboarding is just like golf. It’s expensive and only a few do it.”
But that doesn’t stop the club from participating. Tankersley sees this club as a great way to allow students experience what Stockton doesn’t have.
“A lot of students don’t have access to the snow. It changes lives, it’s like another world,” he said.
Tankersley admits it brings tears to his eyes that he’s providing this to students. “I’ve snowboarded my entire life, so sharing this with students brings me happiness!”
First year member and president senior Joel Castillo is thankful to be part of this club.
“It’s just for the memories,” Castillo said. For it being his last year of high school he wanted to be exposed to a new environment which this club provides.
“I’m very thankful that Tankersley and Shaw take the time to come with us.”
Castillo says snowboarding is one of the most difficult sports he has tried. “Although I fell down a few times, I realized it was so sick. I couldn’t wait to get the hang of it.”
Sophomore Giovanna Lovato-Batto also joined this year and agrees with Castillo. “I had Mr. Shaw’s class and he introduced it to me and my best friend.” Having prior experience with skiing
Lovato-Batto realized it wasn’t going to be as difficult for her. “I guess it just comes naturally to me,” she said.
Adventure and thrill is what comes to mind when she thinks of Snowboarding Club.
Her favorite part was sitting on the lifts and seeing the view surrounding her. “I feel like not a lot of students know about this club. A lot more people should do it because it’s a fun experience overall.”
Senior Juan Thunander, another member that went to Squaw Valley, said having a background of skateboarding benefited him in this sport. “Balancing myself is something I can do, thanks to skateboarding,” he said.
With all the difficulties one has to face when snowboarding, Thunander had to deal with the speed he was taking and trying to stop. “You have to 90 degrees yourself a certain way and lean backwards. The more you lean back, the more you decrease your speed,” he said.
Another thing was being able to walk. Students having to strap up the board onto themselves can be a bit awkward, as Thunander explains. “Every time you move your feet the board goes with you. However you fall the board follows you.”
Instead of falling he flipped several times. “Man I didn’t know the snow was that hard. After our trip I felt like I was hit by a car literally.”
Despite the body ache, he believes it was all worth it.
“Money well spent, time well spent. It doesn’t get better than that. I would recommend this club to anybody.”