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New Kids Center Opens at Arapahoe Basin

30th March 2015 | Peter Biolsi

News Regions: Colorado, Rocky Mountains

Resorts in this article: Arapahoe Basin Ski Area

The new Kids Center at the base of A-Basin. - ©Bill Linfield/Arapahoe Basin

The new Kids Center at the base of A-Basin.

Copyright: Bill Linfield/Arapahoe Basin

The future just got a little brighter for Colorado's next generation of skiers and riders. Earlier this month, Arapahoe Basin Ski Area opened the doors to its new $2.3 million kids center as a dedicated space where aspiring young shredders will learn, have fun and foster a lifelong love for the snow. The three-story facility was designed with both kids and parents in mind and embodies A-Basin's commitment to a great guest experience, along with the environment.

"With more families choosing to ski the Basin, we wanted kids to have the same positive and fun experiences that their parents have here," said Alan Henceroth, A-Basin Chief Operating Officer. "This new space not only allows us to improve our kids lesson offerings, but lets kids feel like this is their mountain, too."

Balance beams and obstacle courses at the new Kids Center help to hone skills for the hill. - ©Bill Linfield/Arapahoe Basin

Balance beams and obstacle courses at the new Kids Center help to hone skills for the hill.

Copyright: Bill Linfield/Arapahoe Basin

For Kids

The new kids center features a designated space for kids lesson check-in and rentals, as well as a dedicated dining space for lesson groups to alleviate overcrowding in the rental shop and A-frame. Not only is the vibe inviting and kid-friendly on first impression with colorful decor and playful signage, but the physical space has been developed to make them feel instantly comfortable.

The brand new kitchen, dining and restrooms feature kid-sized furniture. The play area features low balance beams, soft obstacle courses and balance boards to help kids start honing skills they can take to the hill. Television screens mounted at kid level and pictures and facts about the wildlife found in and around A-Basin help to make the learning environment visual and fun. Décor featuring Ace, the A-Basin mountain goat mascot, helps kids determine their height and weight for picking out rentals, which feature an updated fleet of Rossignol skis, Burton snowboards and Giro helmets (included in every rental package).

For Parents

Kids aren't the only ones to benefit from the new facility. Early drop-off starting at 8 a.m. allows mom and dad to be all-star parents and still make it to first chair. A well-stocked retail space adds convenience for replacing forgotten gloves, neck-warmers or even layers on cold days. And mom and dad can ski a little more carefree knowing that the kids center lives right above A-Basin Ski Patrol and First-Aid with a waiting room and state-of-the-art medical equipment.

A-Basin's Ski Patrol and First-Aid are located in the first floor of the new Kids Center. - ©Bill Linfield/Arapahoe Basin

A-Basin's Ski Patrol and First-Aid are located in the first floor of the new Kids Center.

Copyright: Bill Linfield/Arapahoe Basin

For Mother Nature

The new center also addresses needs of the planet by employing sustainable features like an LED and low-wattage lighting system with occupancy and daylight sensors and a smart ventilation system designed to recover energy normally lost in typical ventilation systems. A large solar panel atop the kids center offsets a majority of the building's electrical usage and can produce approximately 15 megawatt hours of energy per year—the CO2 reduction equivalent of planting 260 trees.

Hours of operation for the A-Basin kids center are 8 a.m.4:30 p.m., seven days a week through the regular snowsports season—ending April 26, 2015. Late-season hours and lesson availability are to be determined. A-Basin boasts the longest operating season of any North American resort, averaging 233 ski days annually. This season, the resort isn't projected to close until June 21, 2015, so there's still plenty of time to get your little ones on snow for a leg up on 2016.

The play area in the new Kids Center at Arapahoe Basin. - ©Bill Linfield/Arapahoe Basin

The play area in the new Kids Center at Arapahoe Basin.

Copyright: Bill Linfield/Arapahoe Basin

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