Fort Providence will host its free “Lap a Loppet” ski event on Thursday, the first held in the Dehcho community since the Covid-19 pandemic began.
The loppet starts at Deh Gáh School at noon. Bradley Thom, who helped coordinate the event, said ski equipment can be provided for residents who don’t have access to any.
An instructor from out of town will help teach skills to participants.
“It’s going to be a beautiful day. It’s a good opportunity to come outside and enjoy the environment and the nice weather,” said Thom. The noon forecast for Fort Providence promises temperatures of around -10C with snow flurries.
“When we have a group like this, we can connect with individuals, like those learning how to ski or kids who are basically walking with skis on,” Thom continued.
“They’re all learning together and all have giant smiles on their faces. It’s a good time to come and connect with the land and yourself.”
Prizes for participants include gift cards for the Northern Store and Snowshoe Café, as well as merchandise.
People looking to participate in the loppet from out of town are able to join and will be given gas vouchers and food tickets, Thom added.
He said some residents had only picked up the sport during the pandemic, when skiing represented one of the few sports relatively unaltered by public health restrictions, and there is now a “good little group” of regular skiers.
“During Covid, people have valued it more,” he said.
“Everyone’s invited to come out and try out the ski trails.”