News & Stories
TRAIL KIDS April Family of the Month – Meet the Good Family
I (Renee) enjoy mountain biking and I get to do more of it now that the girls are doing it, which I hadn’t in years. I also participate in some of the running races. I may complain about the age-gap relay, but I really do love running with my kids. For my husband Rob, the Luminary Loppet is his favorite event, and he’s gotten really into skiing. Lately, our daughter Paloma has been making him go every day.
What ages are your kids and how long have they been in the program?
When we signed up our oldest child Lorenzo for TRAIL KIDS (then titled fastkids), it was with the idea that he would learn different activities that would keep him moving and outdoors. Right away, we got so much more than that; we enjoyed the perks of a wonderful community. Now all three kids bike, ski, and run – both in programs and on their own.
- Lorenzo is 14. He was part of TRAIL KIDS from ages 8-13.
- Paloma is 11. She joined at age 8, and is still in TRAIL KIDS.
- Sabina is 7, and she just started in the spring TRAIL KIDS mountain biking program.
How have TRAIL KIDS programs helped your kids during this difficult time of COVID-19?
It has been amazing! They had been distance learning from home since mid-March, so they hadn’t seen anyone their age for a long time. Then suddenly two days a week they were hanging out with friends, staying active and connected again because of TRAIL KIDS.
What is their favorite activity within the Loppet Foundation?
Lorenzo was very into being with his friends and playing in the woods. I think he liked the camaraderie and the community – even carpooling with other TRAIL KIDS friends. He had a few favorite coaches over the years, like coach Tyson who focused on taking them off the beaten path, never about how fast the kids were, but all about the adventure. Lorenzo also loved orienteering in the fall.
Paloma loves skiing and running. She’d have a really hard time deciding between the two. I don’t think she could pick – and she got into mountain biking this year too. Paloma loves the Loppet Games. It’s almost always really cold and dreary, but the kids are still out there for 6 or so hours. Her favorite event at the Loppet Games is the obstacle course with the hay bales. She also likes the longer races during the City of Lakes Loppet Winter Festival, and misses when it was down Hennepin Ave. When she was 3, Paloma had never skied, ever, and Lorenzo was signed up for the City of Lakes Loppet Winter Festival, so we gave her those clip-on skis and she raced! This will be our 10th race year!
Sabina is super excited to start TRAIL KIDS. For years, we’d drop off her siblings and either leave right away or wait around for a bit, but she was never old enough to participate. Now she gets to go too! I think it was Sabina who got Paloma to try mountain biking. Sabina was determined and Paloma wasn’t sure, and in the end, they both signed up. Sabina was excited about her TRAIL KIDS fall friends and she loved her coach, Per. It was Sabina’s first year skiing with TRAIL KIDS and she loved it! When we pick her up, she is full of excitement and adventure stories from that day’s practice.
All three kids skied this season. Lorenzo skied with SW Nordic, Paloma skied with LNR and TRAIL KIDS, and Sabina skied with TRAIL KIDS. Rob and I get to ski together when they are out there.
Has your family made some lifelong friends with other families through the program?
Yes, we have really connected differently with friends we already had. We also constantly run into kids our children have met through the Loppet in other activities. Our community grows stronger through the Loppet.
What has your involvement with the Loppet been in other areas?
I volunteer at the kids’ races, and I do some of the running races. Rob was actually one of the architects with HGA who designed The Trailhead building. We also never miss the City of Lakes Loppet Winter Festival!
Provide any other information about your family – favorite outdoor activities together, hobbies, travel, etc.
We sail as a family on Bde Maka Ska and have traveled to go sailing elsewhere. The kids do it on their own too with Lorenzo racing for the Southwest sailing team.
We love to travel, especially to Mexico to visit family.
Lorenzo plays baseball, Paloma plays softball, and Sabina plays soccer.
You don’t always see all the benefits of the program when you’re there, but right now, a year after Lorenzo finished TRAIL KIDS, he’ll grab his bike and go biking or go for a run. He never felt competitive in any way, but he learned how to be outside, dress appropriately for the weather, and workout. I know that’s because of TRAIL KIDS!
Paloma likes the competitive side of TRAIL KIDS, and Lorenzo not so much. It seems that Sabina is somewhere in between, but only time will tell. They all took home whatever they wanted from it; there is room for all kids in the TRAIL KIDS programs.