Where Wooden Skis Rule

If closing weekend at Beaver Creek makes you wish you had a time machine, you’ll be in good company at the Vintage SkiFest: Last year’s vintage ski race (held in conjunction with the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame induction ceremony) was so much fun that the resort decided to make it a full-blown annual event.

“It’s a great opportunity to break out some old skis you’ve inherited or have had on display on the wall and get them back in action,” says Beaver Creek spokeswoman Jen Brown. “We really wanted to celebrate the history and heritage of skiing and ski racing and tap into that nostalgia that people have. For a lot of people, their old gear is like their first love. It represents their earliest connections to the sport.”

There will be museum-quality vintage gear on display in glass cases at the base area and in use on the mountain, where the main event is the second annual Jimmie Heuga Memorial Vintage Ski Race at noon, with prize categories for men and women on both wooden and metal skis racing on slalom and mogul runs. Look for old-timey bamboo race gates, race officials hand-timing the race with stopwatches, and a special celebrity race expected to bring out local legends and their treasured gear.

“It’s incredible to see the transformation and to think about how quickly we went from wooden skis with leather binding straps to the super-high-tech gear of today,” Brown says. “Getting into costume and getting into character is a fun way to close out the season and pay tribute to the history of the sport.” Events take place throughout the day, starting around 9 a.m. For more information, including race registration details, visit www.beavercreek.com.
Sat., April 16, 2011

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Colin Bane
Contact: Colin Bane