Congratulations to this month’s Student Voices writer, Katrin O’Grady, a student at the Montrose School in Medfield. You can check out Katrin’s article published on BostonHerald.com here.
Many Bostonians are unaware that at the intersection of Wellesley, Weston, and Newton exists a Nordic skiing hub.
In fact, the Weston Ski Track is the only cross-country ski facility with snowmaking capabilities within two hours of Boston. Weston Ski Track shares land with the Leo J. Martin Golf Course, both owned by the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR). The DCR leases the land to the Weston Ski Track in the winter on a contract basis.
For 40 years, the two sports have shared the same space without a hitch; however, recent modifications by the DCR to improve golf on the facility have decreased available ski turf.
Advocates for preserving the ski track formed Friends of Leo J. Martin Skiing (FOLJMS), a nonprofit organization with a mission to preserve the coexistence of both ski and golf in one facility. The group formed a year ago, when changes to the golf course raised alarm. Orange fences marked off spaces formerly used for skiing. Mounds of dirt littered the normally smooth trails. Skiable terrain was cut by 30 percent.
FOLJMS advocate Elizabeth Wilcox explained the organization’s goals: “FOLJMS has been working with the DCR as it invests in the golf facility to ensure that DCR’s work does not jeopardize the long-term sustainability of the ski facility.”
She added that the organization strives to demonstrate to the DCR “how changes made to the golf course impact the ski facility” and “to educate the DCR on the value that the winter facility brings to the Greater Boston community.”
In the 2012-13 season alone, the ski track boasted approximately 30,000 visits in just about four months. The ski track is home to high school and college teams and provides a healthy way for Boston and surrounding communities to stay active in the winter.
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