WCCC Student Ski Champion Teaches Shead Outing Club

Photo: The Shead Outing Club enjoyed a day of ski lessons with WCCC Adventure Recreation student and Maine ski champion Curtis Paradis at the Moosehorn Wildlife Refuge. From left to right: Curtis Paradis, Laura Lane, Luke Lane, Audrey Bradbury, and Outing Club coordinator Stephanie Allard. 

The students of the Shead High School Outing Club were recently treated to a special skiing lesson from a senior student in Washington County Community College’s Adventure Recreation program. The student, Curtis Paradis, has previously distinguished himself by winning three Class A State titles in skiing along with being recognized as Boys’ Skiing Athlete of the Year.

The lesson was held on Friday, March 31st as part of a capstone class in the Adventure Recreation program. According to program director Scott Fraser, the capstone class requires students to design, develop, and deliver a “product” related to adventure recreation. Students are able to tailor their product to their specific interests. 

As a longtime skier — having begun his lessons at the age of 2 — it was a natural choice for Paradis to pick Nordic skiing as his product. The Shead Outing Club volunteered to be recipients of the lessons and a ski trailer obtained from a grant through the Eliot Fishbein fund of the Maine Community Foundation was used to transport the equipment. The students met at Moosehorn Wildlife Refuge where the staff specially groomed trails for the occasion.

“It was a great learning experience for Curtis,” said Fraser. “He developed it, set up a feedback form, and set up goals to see if they were met. It was a great experiential learning experience... You can’t get it any other way.”

One of Paradis’s goals was for everybody who came to have an enjoyable experience. “They all seemed to,” shared Paradis. “They all said they would go skiing again when they have the opportunity.”

“Curtis was great with the students,” said Outing Club coordinator Stephanie Allard. “He really inspired them with his passion for skiing. He is quite an accomplished skier himself but was extremely patient working with beginners.”

For the Shead students, the experience was both novel and enjoyable. On the way there, one fretted: “I’m afraid I’m going to really like it, and then have to wait till next year to do it again!” After experiencing the lessons, their “fears” were confirmed. “It was a fun first time skiing for me,” said student Audrey Bradbury. “We had a good instructor and it was more enjoyable than I thought it would be!”