Learn more about the history and legacy behind powderpigs!
Powderpigs was founded in the season of 1969-70 by Nancy and Petter Ring. The Ring’s sought a ski school that met their values and expectations- small class sizes, teaching would encompass each child’s learning style, and an experience that would cultivate a life long love for skiing and the mountains within each student. When they couldn’t find exactly what they were looking for they decided to create it themselves.
Powderpigs spent the first three seasons operating out of Hyak, now known as Summit East. The Little Pigpen, that sits beside our building today, was the original ski school building. With a wood burning stove inside to heat the Little Pigpen, the bread that also was baking in the stove would send amazing aromas across the Hyak base area during lessons each weekend.
Prior to the winter of 1973 the Tanner Family, who formerly owned Ski Acres (now Summit Central) invited Powderpigs to move over. After much consideration Nancy and Petter decided that this was a welcome idea and moved the Little Pigpen from Hyak to where it currently resides. Over the years Powderpigs has seen several Area ownership changes, but Powderpigs has stayed rooted in its foundational beliefs about early childhood education, and teaching children to enjoy winter snow sports.
One things that sets Powderpigs apart from many other seasonal based sports businesses is our instructor training. Kid Tech started in 1969 with the help of Dr. Rose McCartin. She and Nancy worked to develop an instructor training curriculum that taught about learning theory, memory processing, child psychology & development, acquisition of skills, and more. This training is still offered each Fall for our Instructors in addition to our Ski & Board Tech training that takes place on snow in early Winter.
When Powderpigs started back in 1969 there were 100 students the entire season and 25 instructors. Today we serve well over 700 students per season with over 130 instructors. Throughout the years we have served not only countless families, we have also been honored to work with many great instructors. We have watched children progress through our school and become instructors, or come back with their own families to share the Powderpig Experience with their own children. We even have some second generation students currently instructing!
While our programs may evolve over time, one thing always remains the same- We are a school that focuses on individual learning and development, and the skill needs of every student. These core values will always come first.
Our instructors are selected from individuals who have shown real enthusiasm for working with children as well as skiing and snowboarding. Each fall, our staff participates in the fall long Powderpig Instructor Training Program. Weekly dry land clinics are followed by On Snow clinics in December. These clinics cover the many facets of the learning to ski or snowboard process in order to provide each of our students with a happy, safe and successful learning experience.