Las Vegas Ski and Snowboard Resort continues their successful program to help kids get into helmets for skiing and snowboarding. The resort has partnered with Mountain View Hospital and Fremont Emergency Services to offer free helmets to local kids.
The resort started the helmet program about four seasons ago, giving away 60 helmets the first year. Last winter, the hospital and emergency services joined in. This winter, funds raised totaled $5,500 to spend on helmets to give away to kids.
"We'll go over 500 helmets given away by this year," John Morelli, director of ski patrol, told OnTheSnow. "It's now getting difficult to find kids without helmets. We pluck them out of line and give them a voucher to go get a helmet."
It may be getting easier to get kids into helmets, but helmets only work when they are fitted to heads. "The biggest problem is keeping helmets on their heads as heads grow," said Morelli. "We get some kids that come back every season for a new one, and we make sure their helmets get passed on to someone else."
This year, a few adult helmets are available, too, in hopes that parents can model the importance of wearing a helmet. "Most parents won't wear helmets, and as a result they don't make their kids wear them," said Morelli. "Head injuries are probably the most critical, and it's all about getting in the habit of wearing a helmet."
Kids can get free helmets every Saturday, 9:30 to 11 a.m., Jan. 15 through Feb. 5 at the resort. Kids can get fitted for a helmet before heading to the slopes and get a short skier safety program.
The helmet giveaway program is part of the Lids on Kids campaign and National Ski Area Association Safety Week Jan. 15-23.
The resort is collecting donations for their helmet program. Donations can be mailed to LVSSR, 7501 Tule springs Rd., Suite 110, Las Vegas, NV 89131. Checks should be made out to National Ski Patrol and earmarked for the Lids on Kids Program.