By Bruce Steinberg

Dear Readers:   When I went to one of my favorite cross country ski websites, I saw that there were no race event dates or other information, no doubt caused by the uncertainty of COVID. Therefore, I sent out requests for information to 33 ski races in January. Via phone and email, below are the responses I received so far, mostly for January 2021 but also including some races in December and into February and March. And please refer to Ben Popp’s Birkie Events videos, posted on the slider on the Home page, to stay informed on all things Birkie. I will continue to seek out updates and hope to hear from more events. Also, writer Kierstin Kloeckner has put together a similar list for Winter 2020/2021 Fat Bike races that will appear in the December print edition, along with writer Delaney FitzPatrick’s information on how to make your virtual cross country ski race the best it can be.

If you have any additional information on races and sites, please reach out to me via bruce.steinberg@mmclocal.com.  

And because there is no paywall, please feel free to take a long walk around this site and so many stories reflecting things happening from day to day. Thank you. I truly hope this helps! Best, Bruce — Managing Editor, Silent Sports Magazine

The Snekkevik: Held at the fabulous Nine Mile Forest (last year on January 11th) with multiple event choices. From Gary Zimbric, President of the Wausau Nordic Ski Club — We think we’ll be holding a modified event, like many others, but are still studying the options. Updates at http://wausaunordic.org/snekkevik.

 Lapham Race Series: From Kristin Maki, race director — The Lapham Peak Wednesday Night Adult Ski League and Junior Nordic Ski League will be held in 2021 starting on January 6th and recurring for seven total Wednesdays. Our ski leagues take place on manmade and/or natural snow on State Kettle Moraine Forest property; therefore, we must follow WI State DNR rules for meetings during the Covid-19 pandemic. Group activities are limited in number and registration will be online this year. Updates for registration and times for K-6, Middle School or adult groups will be updated at www.laphampeakfriends.org.

Coleraine JNQ:  Held in Minnesota last year on January 18-19. From Jon Arnston, MINSA. We are determining those things [COVID’s impact] now. CXC has devised an extensive COVID plan, but it is still being fine-tuned. The future is still somewhat murky, but becoming clearer. Update from Jon Arnston on 10/26/20: We have some more clarity at Mt. Itasca now, although of course everything is fluid. We plan to host a CXC JNQ Event on December 19-20 which is titled the CXC Cup Holiday Carnival; there will be specific COVID mitigation procedures in place. Information will be available at CXC or at the event website. CXC: https://cxcskiing.org/pages/events/cxc-junior-cup.htmlEvent website: https://mtitascanordic.wixsite.com/cxc-cup The US Biathlon Junior/Youth National Trials have also been moved to Mt. Itasca from Anchorage due to COVID and travel concerns. The dates for those events are January 28-31. COVID mitigation procedures will be in place, although we are not yet sure what those will look like. The best places for updates are at the USBA website or the Minnesota Biathlon Website. Event contact person is Vlad Cervenka, cervenkv@gmail.comUSBA: https://www.teamusa.org/us-biathlon/events;  USBA announcement: https://www.teamusa.org/US-Biathlon/News/2020/October/07/Changes-Announced-to-US-Junior-Youth-Trials?fbclid=IwAR36FPBksVzF9SQSJ9Y4fvTZMgbE9tfsTLsvY8jObVR4NFEtWMMVtPKa5fE  Minnesota Biathlon:  https://minnesotabiathlon.com.

Bemidji Cross Country Ski Club Events: Club Secretary Patrick Donnay provided the following: Of our events listed below, I have put what we know at this point. The Snowjourn [tentatively set for January 16] is planned to go ahead, but not sure of details – e.g. untimed, rolling start, etc.  The club website or Facebook page is the best place to look for new information.  [https://www.facebook.com/skibemidji] The Sunday Ski School (Jan. 10, 17, 24, and 31) and the Barneloppet have been cancelled. The Skiper Bowl – February 7 (Super Bowl Sunday) tentatively as scheduled. Candlelight Ski at Bemidji State Park – TBD (no park activities currently scheduled). MN Finlandia – Saturday, February 15 (tentative reformat planned, contact Minn Fin). Community Ski Day at Movil Maze – TBD. Tour De Bemidji – Saturday, March 6 or 7 TBD. 

 

 Noquemanon: Marquette, Michigan, January 22-24. From Assistant Race Director Paul Johnson — We are still working to determine details but at this time we do plan on an actual event that will be modified. We are planning around several possible scenarios and what we are actually able to do will be dependent on the status of executive orders from the Governor of the State of Michigan. The public can stay up to date with our event in several ways: View or sign up for newsletters on the race website: http://www.noquemanon.com [and] follow the race Facebook page.

     Badger State Games: From Nick Ockwig, BSG Director —For Nordic, we have made the decision to not have a large tent with concessions. No Concessions and anyplace for a gathering spot. Basically, come to event, get dressed in your car, ski your event, and leave. Go to http://www.badgerstategames.org  for continued updates.

     Duluth XC Ski Club: From Eric Chandler, DXC Communications. Our Nordic Spirit Race is still scheduled for January 30. The format is TBD. The best way for people to stay up to date with the race and other events is via our website: http://Duluthxc.com.

     Hyland Rennet: January 9, Bloomington, MN. From new Race Director Brian Mastel— The event will be taking place. The Rennet web pages were just updated and should have most of the information you need at http://threeriversparks.org/skirennet. We may have to make a few modifications, but fully intend to put on the races in-person. 

     HinderBinder Ski Race: January 16, 2021. From Norm Hoyt, Director of Educational Ministries. There will be a race no matter what. There WILL be a safe way to do it. More information at http://www.forestsprings.com.