Category Archives: Uncategorized

Important Trakkers Trips and Events Update

Dear Trakkers – in recognition of the evolving COVID-19 pandemic, the club’s executive has decided to cancel this week’s proposed Sunday trip, and thus our skiing season comes to an end. There will be no further Sunday trips planned. Our planned Annual General Meeting and Year-End Party, scheduled to take place on April 8, is also being cancelled.

We have made this decision after careful consideration of Public Health Canada’s guidelines about risk-informed decision-making for mass gatherings during the COVID-19 global outbreak. While our Sunday trips may not traditionally be considered as a “mass gathering”, we are extremely mindful of the close proximity of our members while on the bus, and the club’s inability to assess potential high-risk factors such as individuals’ travel histories or those who may have occupational exposure. Additionally, the demographic in our club is diverse — including older adults and/or people potentially with immune vulnerabilities — and we feel that getting out for “one last ski” simply doesn’t off-set the potential risk.

We trust that our members respect this decision. Any members who may have signed up and paid for this Sunday’s trip will have their accounts credited in full. An additional update re: AGM rescheduling / alternate approach will be communicated once more information is available.

Best wishes,
Your Trakkers Executive

March 2020 President’s Broadcast

Hello Trakkers!

We have had a fantastic end-of-season with one trip yet on the horizon. Even though spring is in the air the snow base further north is still decent. Keep your eye on our website and social media platforms for updates on our next trip!

Annual General Meeting

We have recently provided you with Notice of AGM.  Relevant materials, including nomination and proxy forms can be found on the Operations page of our website.  Log into your Trakkers account to access this. The AGM takes place at 6:30 p.m. at the Burdock Brewery, 1184 Bloor St. W. (between Dufferin and Lansdowne). The meeting will be short (we are aiming for 30 min’s) after which we will have our…

Year-End Party!!!!!

Come on out and join us for an evening of yummy food, friends, freshly-brewed beer, wine, non-alcoholic beverages and some music! The venue is really lovely and we have a private space all to ourselves. Tickets are $25 per person, food included, cash bar. For more information and to register and purchase tickets go to our website and log into your account, like you would for a Sunday trip. Bring a friend & let’s celebrate the end of a fantastic season!

Weekend Trips

Woolner House (Highlands Nordic) will no longer be available to us for the season of 2020-2021. We are now searching for a new destination and need your help! If you know of a fabulous Nordic skiing destination within southern or central Ontario please contact us to share your idea with Henry Furlott, our Weekend Trips Director. Henry can be reached at: weekendtrips@trakkers.ca

Payment Reminder

Something to remember for the remainder of  this season (and to file in your memory bank for next season): It really helps us if you pay your fare as early as possible versus waiting until hours before a Sunday trip departure to pay online. This ensures that data on the check in tablets the bus captains use is as up-to-date as possible. Do please try to pay before noon on the Saturday before the trip. Our bus captains do an amazing job but are occasionally stretched with distractions that could easily be avoided and make for a more smooth check-in for everyone. Thanking you all in advance!

Let’s hope for one more trip this Sunday and see you at the AGM and Year End Party!

Katja Lutte

President, Trakkers XC Ski Club

February 2020 President’s Broadcast

Hello Trakkers!

We have been blessed with good conditions, most recently for our trip to beautiful, spectacular Arrowhead Provincial Park.

Since we do pre-announce trips farther away destinations, you may want to know that we will go back to Arrowhead again on March 1st. Again, there will be an early departure at 8:00 a.m.

Wine & Cheese

A great Wine & Cheese Event was held this year at Scenic Caves.  Thanks to Gina Ang for putting on a great spread.  Below, Gina’s salad bar – one of several tables of treats.

Annual General Meeting and Year-End Event

This year’s AGM and Year-End Event will take place on April 8th. The AGM will take place at 6:30 p.m. Our party will start at 7 p.m. we will be at:

This year’s AGM and Year-End Event will take place on April 8th. The AGM will take place at 6:30 p.m. Our party will start at 7 p.m. we will be at:

Burdock Brewery

93304eaa-4376-4bbc-821c-aaecf0fe874d

The brewery is located on Bloor St. Between Dufferin and Lansdowne.

1184 Bloor Street West, Toronto, ON M6H 1N2

Food at the Burdock is delicious. Plentiful and delicious appetizers will be served. Ticket price is $25 per person. This includes food. There is a cash bar serving both wine and beer.

This is a really nice little micro brewery with a private party space at the back of the brewery, reserved just for Trakkers.

Board Position Recruitment

Thanks to an active Nomination Committee we have made some progress with recruitment for participation on our Board of Directors. We have a couple of key positions for which we still need volunteers. These are:

Director Responsible for Sunday Trips: This involves setting up a tentative trips schedule toward reserving coaches early in the season, keeping an eye on conditions to confirm those trips or choose a different destination based on conditions and communicating with our webmaster and communications director to make sure our membership knows where we are going. Much of the initial planning and confirming if rates and coaches happens early in the season. Weekly tasks become quite routine once the season starts. The person who takes this on does not need to be an experienced skier or attend every trip. Good communication and the ability to organize and schedule are the main requirements for this position. The Board is always happy to supports this person in decision-making, if needed.Any questions, contact: sundaytrips@trakkers.ca

8e86be41-b270-41f1-9a25-8c003bb8fc92

Director Responsible for Ski School: This image may have sparked your curiosity about becoming an instructor.  We are recruiting for next season. We need someone to share this portfolio with someone who has already offered to do this part-time. By part time we mean carry half of the load. The person who has already volunteered is an instructor, so the other director would not need to have instructor experience. It is a very rewarding experience and opportunity to meet and help fellow Trakkers.
Contact: lessons@trakkers.ca for details.  

Director Responsible for Weekend Trips: This position requires requires regular follow-up to the two resorts the club books. First the deposit, then the final payment. It might also require a new venue if one becomes unavailable. This director follows up with members who apply to secure payment and to assign rooms and cottages.  Some adjustment in cottages might be necessary if numbers are too low.  Any questions about this position ca be directed to: weekendtrips@trakkers.ca

The Trakkers board are is a committed and fun bunch. We meet once a month at Swansea Town Hall. Remote participation is possible. Please submit expressions of interest to: president@trakkers.ca

Membership Fee Drop

If your friends have joined you as guests and had a great time, Or membership fees go down to $50 after February 15th.

That’s all and, until next time, be among those who still say LET IT SNOW!!!

Katja Lutte,

President, Trakkers XC Ski Club

January 2020 President’s Broadcast

Hello Trakkers!

I would like to to start this broadcast by welcoming our many new and returning members!

Sunday Trip Logistics

We would like to review, again, our system for weekly Sunday trips communication.

With the exceptions of trips farther away, as well as our wine & cheese event, we have decided not to post a seasonal schedule, as we frequently change destination due to very changeable weather conditions.

The home page of our website will have the most recent information about the next Sunday trip. This is posted on the Monday before the Sunday trip. Our social media platforms will also broadcast the next destination starting on Mondays. Critical updates relating to weather and cancellations will also be posted.

Information about farther-away trips and our annual wine and cheese trip is posted on the Sunday Trips page of  our website. There, you will also find other helpful information about trips, followed by a list of our destinations, amenities at the resorts, trail fees and rentals rates.

We would also like to remind you to please do your best to bring cash in the exact amount for bus fare and  trail fees for you and your guests. This will make the lives of your volunteer bus captains much easier. We thank you in advance for this!

Recent Trips

We have had a couple of trips to Scenic Caves in December, which was a pretty good start to the season. On January 5th we took two buses to Highlands Nordic, where conditions were surprisingly good, given rain at lower altitude and somewhat warmer temps.

We arrived to freshly baked goods – always a huge draw at Highlands, where home-cooked foods are always prepared for us!

095654e5-ea7c-46d4-b972-ec5812ae8be4-2

We met quite a few new members, which is always great.  Many enjoyed the benefits of our various types of lessons.  See our instructor Laurel stretching with her students before heading out on the trails.

… and we never get tired of this beautiful view of beautiful Georgian Bay!

4416a880-7733-417d-af19-c6ba742dd045

Unfortunately weather was not kind to us last weekend.  Still, we wait for snow and here’s hoping …

In the meantime, if you are new to skiing and want to know how to dress for the occasion, or if you just want to read a fun little article, read the blog Dress for Success, written by our volunteer blogger Gillian Kranias. Thanks Gillian!

February 2nd – Trakkers Wine & Cheese

Our annual wine and cheese event is set to take place on our February 2nd trip to Scenic Caves. Make sure you join us for a fun time skiing and socializing in a cozy log cabin. Finger foods and wine, as well as non-alcoholic drinks will be provided. This is a great time to bring a friend to introduce them to the club. Do register early, as the trip sells out quickly. If you are interested in volunteering with set up and clean up of the event please contact Gina Ang at social@trakkers.ca.

March 1st Trip to Arrowhead Provincial Park

We will be going to Arrowhead Provincial Park on March 1st.  The park now has  a large new visitors’ centre which also contains the rentals service. Arrowhead also has superior grooming equipment. You can also bring your skates and skate on their beautiful ice trails which wind through the forest. The location is in the hilly terrain of our Canadian Shield which is truly  beautiful.

This is most definitely a trip well worth putting on your list.  More information will be provided on our website and through our social media platforms.

Planning for Year End Event

We’re starting to plan our year end party and need your help! Please take a few minutes to complete a survey at this link. This will help us make it an event we will all enjoy!

Weekend Trip To Blue Spruce – Algonquin Park

The Blue Spruce weekend trip from February 7 – 9 still has places available. For more information, please contact weekendtrips@trakkers.ca.

Giving Back to the Club – Are You a Future Member of the Trakkers Board of Directors?

We are looking for new people to join our fabulous Board of Directors. As you probably know, every single aspect of our club is driven by volunteers.

With many of our board members having held various portfolios for a number of years and with two departures due to job relocation, we find ourselves in the concerning situation of key board positions becoming vacant at the end of this season. Not being able to fill key positions would cause significant challenges to the club, including possibly affecting our historically good membership rates.

Aside from being in real need of help, we can also say with solid reassurance that being on our board is a good experience. Here is what some board members have to say about their experience:

“Firstly, I like working with fun, like-minded members who are passionate about Trakkers. I also like being a part of the decision-making part of the club. I thrive on systems and order so I feel fulfilled with my work-making the ski school run as smoothly as possible.”

“It provides a platform to spread the word about the club to anyone you encounter. It  feels great to contribute to an organization that you know is entirely volunteer-run and introduces you to a great winter activity.”

Board members receive free membership as a small token of appreciation for their time.  Board meetings are once a month and are productive, fun and usually involve pizza. Board members are a friendly group that support one another. The average time commitment for board members is 6-8 hours per month. We are also broadening opportunities for participating in board meetings remotely (i.e. via Skype) for the 2020-2021 season. To become a board member, it is not necessary to participate in every ski trip.

Below are a couple of portfolios open and the skills we are looking for:

Director of Ski School

  • Good organizer and communicator
  • Comfortable with managing 9 Ski School Instructors
  • Willing to become familiar with CANSI (Canadian Association of Nordic Ski Instructors) training
  • Familiar with google sheets for scheduling instructors
  • Familiar with apps such as Doodle to schedule Instructor meetings and an Instructor workshops
  • Comfortable with creating a seasonal Ski School budget and anticipating costs for the season.
  • Maintaining Ski School Dropbox with relevant templates and schedules pertinent to Ski School
  • Liaison with:
    • Communication director for social media postings related to ski school
    • Web master for weekly updates to website or changes to Lessons page
    • Bus captain coordinator
    • Members and instructors in recruitment of new instructors

Director of Bus Captains

  • Problem solver
  • Works well in Excel
  • Has the patience and positive demeanor to teach and encourage new bus captains

Treasurer

  • Experience in finance/banking/accounting/bookkeeping/budgeting
  • Experience managing low-risk investments

Weekend Trips

  • Good communication skills
  • Organizational skills toward finding and booking resort destinations

Please contact me if you are interested in becoming a Trakkers board member at: president@trakkers.ca

We would like to thank those of you who have come forward to express interest or have confirmed that you would stand for other portfolios.  Please know that we are beyond grateful and thrilled!

Is Your Membership Profile Updated?

Last but not least, when was the last time you looked at your membership profile to see whether it is still up to date? We are asking returning members to please log in to your account and select “Edit Profile” to ensure your profile is updated.

Wishing you all well as the days get longer!

Katja Lutte,

President, Trakkers XC Ski Club

December 2019 President’s Broadcast

 

Hello Trakkers!

Welcome Back to Winter!!!

We are off to an early winter start with our first Sunday Trip to Scenic Caves on December 8th.

1b54e130-a0e4-4601-b6b2-b0f6f7538739

This was our opportunity to welcome back returning Trakkers and also quite a few new members.  Conditions were decent and a good time was had by all! Unfortunately, at the moment conditions reported by Scenic Caves are not good for safe and enjoyable skiing tomorrow. Let’s all do a snow dance for the December 22th trip, Stay tuned for communications on both Facebook and our website, as we will give you updates on destinations and conditions.

Open House

The annual Trakkers Open House took place on Friday, November the 15th. It was great to see so many long time members and make new acquaintances! Thanks to all who volunteered. We very much look forward to seeing all of you out on the trails soon!

Board of Directors Update

Our Vice President, Laure Sabatier, has accepted a position out of province and will not be able to continue in her role on our board. This is great news for Laure and not so great for us. Please join us in wishing her well and giving her huge thanks for her contribution, not only in the VP role, but in her prior role as Director of Communications.

open-house-board_li-2

Some of the Trakkers Board of Directors

In the 2020-2021 season, there will be more board vacancies (more on this in the new year), as others on our board will be moving on, both due to relocation and due to wishing to pass on the torch.

Being a 100% volunteer-run club, we rely heavily on our members to keep things going.  If you have the desire to gain experience on a board of directors, or if you already have those skills and want to give back, do let any member of the board know during an upcoming trip, or by mailing me at president@trakkers.ca with your interest. Our board meets once a month. Meetings are both productive and fun! We have great camaraderie within the group and I can honestly say that we always look forward to our meetings and working together to make it all happen.

Weekend Trips

There has been a lot of interest in our upcoming Weekend trips.

January 24-26 trip to Woolner House (Highlands Nordic, Collingwood) has room for 4-5 more people.

February 7-9 trip to Blue Spruce Cottages (Algonquin Park) has room for 4 more people.

For more information, including how to register, please visit the Weekend Trips link of our website.

Trakkers Doing Their Part

We know many of you already have creative ways of using non-disposable containers and utensils while on our trips.

ad024572-4ffb-41f6-934b-5564eb2a3dc7

We would like to strongly encourage everyone to consider ways of avoiding the use of disposable or single use plastics and paper cups. For great ideas on ways to do this, have a look here.

Happy Holidays

On behalf of the Trakkers Board of Directors, I would like to wish the very best of this holiday season to you and yours!

Katja Lutte,

President, Trakkers XC Ski Club

Mini Vacations All Winter Long

By Gillian Kranias (Trakkers member since Dec 2018)

I keep checking the website, almost every day, in anticipation of seeing this winter’s Sunday trips begin. Summer vacations are over. Yes, fall is a beautiful season. But I am yearning for the mini vacations I can now get any Sunday in winter!

We joined Trakkers last year. It was all that I thought it could be … and more:

More long days outside….

 

More quiet trails to enjoy, at resorts I had never known of….

 

More friends who love the outdoors….

Morning ski lessons, free for members and our guests….

And more time with our feet up after a good day’s skiing – because Trakkers’ leadership always knew where to enjoy the best skiing (even when snow conditions looked poor or non-existent from Toronto).

As November finally arrives, and with Trakkers annual fall open house this evening, I will reminisce and dream with others who may be as hungry for snow and skiing as I am!

November 2019 President’s Broadcast

Hello Trakkers!

It looks like we may be in for an early season, given some pics friends have shared from north of the city.

 

Trakkers Open House

To kick off the season, come join us at our Trakkers Open House, this coming Friday, November 15th from 7 – 9 p.m. , Rousseau Room, Swansea Town Hall, 95 Lavinia Avenue.

You will have a chance to win a door prize from your favourite resort, including trail passes and ski rentals. This is your chance to join the club, learn about our ski school and Sunday trips. It’s also the time when registration for our  weekend trips begins.

Consider bringing someone new to XC Skiing or even new to Canada to introduce them to our wonderful winter activity!

Winter’s Not Far Off Pub Night

We had a fun time at our recent Winter’s Not Far Off pub night.  Thanks to all who came out!

Bus Captain Training

A reminder to all bus captains, new volunteers and those who will return as bus captains, Bus Captain training takes place on Saturday, November 23, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.  We will be at Swansea Town Hall  for this as well.  Take the stairs up to the second floor and find us in the first room on your left.  There will be food and beverages.

Membership

For insurance purposes, a member of Trakkers must be of age of majority.  We would like to clarify our membership age, participation requirements and corresponding fares for the upcoming season:

  • To become a member, you must be 18 years of age or older (age of majority in Ontario)
  • Those under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult at all times and present a waiver signed by a parent or guardian
  • In addition to membership fees, anyone 18 years of age or older will pay the adult member Sunday trip bus fare
  • Those under the age of 18 (17 and under) pay the child bus trip fare

Do stay tuned for notifications about our first trip by checking on our website and following us on Facebook and Twitter.

Webmaster Assistant

Do you have some technical ability or interest in web development or maintenance? Our Webmaster, Pascal Ethier, is looking for help with simple tasks, such as updating content on our website. If you have these skills and are interested or willing to learn, please contact Pascal at webmaster@trakkers.ca.

We very much look forward to seeing you at the Open House and out on the trails!

Katja Lutte

President, Trakkers XC Ski Club