March 30- April 4, 2014
Snowmass Village, CO
The National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic is a world-leader in adaptive winter sports instruction for U.S. military Veterans and active duty servicemen and women with disabilities.
Set in stunning Snowmass, Colorado, the Clinic will celebrate its 28th year by bringing nearly 400 Veterans with traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, orthopedic amputations, visual impairments, certain neurological conditions and other disabilities to the mountain.
More than 200 certified ski instructors for the disabled, and several current and former members of the U.S. Disabled Ski Team, serve as ski instructors to meet the unique needs of the participants.
In addition to Alpine skiing, the Clinic also features a number of other sports including: cross country, rock climbing, scuba diving, kayaking, and snowmobiling.
The Clinic is co-sponsored by The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and DAV (Disabled American Veterans) and made possible by a number of sponsors who make monetary and in-kind donations.
Registration for volunteers begins in June and participants can sign up beginning in August.
Important NDVWSC Info
Sponsors & Hosts
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and DAV (Disabled American Veterans), with financial assistance from corporate sponsors and individual donors.
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The Grand Junction, Colorado VA Medical Center and VA's Rocky Mountain Network host the event each year.
We are committed to improving the quality of life for Veterans with disabilities. Participants will develop sports skills and take part in a variety of adaptive sports workshops. Clinic participation demonstrates that having a physical or visual disability is not an obstacle to an active rewarding life.
The five-day Clinic consists of downhill and cross-country ski lessons, a challenge race, adaptive sports workshops and educational classes, plus sponsored and self-directed alternate activities such as scuba diving, sled hockey, a climbing wall, snowmobiling and other activities. More than 200 certified ski instructors for the disabled, and several current and former members of the U.S. Disabled Ski Team, serve as ski instructors to meet the unique needs of the participants.
The Clinic will be held in Snowmass Village: Colorado's finest skiing in the majestic Rocky Mountains. Snowmass is renowned as a premier winter destination. Visit http://www.snowmassvillage.com/ for more information.
Your stay in Snowmass Village during the 28th National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic is one you will surely remember.
Statistics (provided by http://www.snowmassvillage.com):
Base Elevation: 8,104 feet
Summit Elevation: 12,510 feet
Vertical Rise: 4,406 feet
Terrain: 3,132 acres
Number of Trails: 91
Miles of Trails: 147 miles
Longest Run: 5.3 miles
Types of Trails: Easiest – 6 percent; More difficult – 50 percent; Most difficult – 12 percent; Expert – 32 percent
Annual Snowfall: 300 inches
Lifts: 21 Totall
Eight and a half months ago, Army Sgt. Kristian “Dino” Cedeno was on the top of the world -- married six days before deploying to Afghanistan with the love of his life and soldiering with his band of brothers from the 3rd Infantry Division’s 2nd Brigade.
Life changed in an instant when Cedeno stepped on an improvised explosive device during a firefight in Kandahar. His right leg was blown off just above the knee, and his left leg was so burned and peppered with shrapnel that his wife, Gwen, said it looked like a shark had chewed it away.
On Monday, Cedeno snowboarded down Snowmass Mountain during the National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic, surprising even himself at his accomplishment. The experience exhilarated Cedeno, one of just two active-duty troops participating in the clinic.
“In one word, I feel like I’m alive again,” he said while celebrating the success with Gwen and his adaptive ski instructor, Air Force veteran Jill Reifsnider, at his side.For Cedeno, the lessons he’s learning at the world’s largest and longest-running rehabilitative disabled sports event are life lessons: never give up and never stop reaching for new heights. It’s the can-do spirit that’s driven him throughout his recovery and rehabilitation, Gwen said.
The speed of Cedeno’s recovery attracts a lot of attention that he admits makes him uncomfortable. “I hate being told I’m a hero or an inspiration,” he said. “I have always been that guy to do his job, not for the ‘Good for you’ or the congratulations.”
In fact, Cedeno said, it’s those around him -- his wife, his fellow soldiers, his caregivers -- who inspire him to press on. Talking privately with his fellow platoon members, he tells them, “You motivated me to continue this fight that I thought I had lost.”
That fight continues this week at the winter sports clinic, where Cedeno said he’s found a support network that will be a big factor in his continued progress -- here on the slopes and in life.
Looking up at the mountain, Cedeno said he was ready to tackle it once again, perhaps even faster this time. “It’s just like my job. Of course I’m going back out there!” he said.
Participation is open to disabled U.S. military service Veterans who receive care at a Department of Veterans Affairs medical facility. In addition, a number of active duty military personnel from Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom have attended in recent years.
Contact the Veterans Affairs Medical Center where you receive care or a local Veterans Service Organization (VSO) for additional information.
What do I need to bring with me to the event?
Participants should bring clothes for layering, waterproof shoes and a great attitude.