It seems as if it has been two decades, not two years, since we last met together and enjoyed the White Pine Stampede. The communities of Mancelona and Bellaire and the 200+ volunteers were deeply disappointed after 35 years of the first Saturday of February having been set aside for the event. Surprisingly, (then again, maybe not so surprising), most of those 200+ volunteers are looking forward to, once again, assisting you on race day.
We have for the first time become associated with the United States Ski Association. We are now a club and sanctioned non-scoring race. Primarily done for insurance purposes we are also now on the USSA calendar.
We are very excited about the Shorts Brewing Cooldown, starting at 1:00 PM in the Bellaire Ballroom located in the Summit Village Lodge. Shorts will be providing product for $1.00 per glass, or $4.50 per pitcher. Shanty Creek and Shorts will be sponsoring an appearance of The Younce Family Guitar Duo, (which I am told will be a quartet), for a bit of musical entertainment as you recover, discuss your race experience with friends and look for yourself appearing in the slideshow. Snack food will also be available, At approximately 3:00 PM the Shorts Brewing Awards Ceremony will begin. Short’s will continue to provide its product at the same very low price.
The 40 kilometer finish is at Summit Village while the 20 KM and 10 KM finishes are at Schuss Village. For the majority of participants your vehicles will be at the school when you finish. Might I suggest: For the 20 Km or 10 KM – Catch the race bus, parked at your bag pickup, returning you to the school parking lot. Once you have retrieved your vehicle, make the short drive to Summit Village for the festivities. For those that finish at Schuss, and do not have a vehicle at the school, the Shanty Creek shuttles will be available to transport you to Summit Village. Detailed directions will be included in your skier packet.
For the 40KM finishers, let me suggest you also take the race bus to the school and make the short drive back. If you have a driver bringing your vehicle to the finish – you have already arrived to the party.
Over thirty some years the White Pine Stampede has been working with Shanty Creek Resorts. This year I have found the preparation, mutual respect and mutual cooperation has proven to be one of the best relationships we have enjoyed. I attribute that to the leadership of Pete Bigford and his staff. You will find Pete highlighted in the race program. He is a cross country skier and is currently contemplating his race choice.
Once again weather is an issue. We are optimistic this year. The predictions are favorable at this point. Follow the website updates for current news.
We are, again this year, donating five dollars of each entry to the Children’s Hospital of Michigan Foundation to be used in conjunction with their ophthalmology department. Between all of you, and the sponsors, we have generated over $96,000 since 1987.
I would like to thank our many sponsors for their continued support and interest in the race. We feel it is unique in that it is a very competitive event for some and at the same time an excellent opportunity to spend time on professionally groomed trails, enjoying the outdoor winter of Antrim County with friends and family. Our sponsors agree and welcome you.
The race committee has been deluged with well wishes for a successful year. The community pride in this event is overwhelming, the weather is looking favorable, the volunteers are primed and ready, and we are all looking forward to meeting our old friends and many new friends on February 2. See you there and then again at the ‘Shorts Brewing Cooldown at Shanty Creek Resorts”