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Why We Have the US Ski Hall of Fame:
121 Years of Ski Jumping in Ishpeming

Friday, February 15, 2008

by Michaeleen O'Sullivan, UPfirst feature writer
Photos by Todd Carter and Joe LaBrecque
Special thanks to Mike Ludlum at WLUC-TV6
for providing details about skier Nita Englund

Ishpeming, Michigan--The 121st Annual Invitational Ski Jumping and Super Tour Event Wednesday at Suicide Hill in Ishpeming left no doubt about the answer to a common Upper Peninsula visitor question: "Why do you guys have the National Ski Hall of Fame?"

Any community brave enough to raise and promote skiers--for more than 100 years--who make the awe-inspiring jumps we saw Wednesday night is obviously very, very committed to skiing as a way of life.

"
The 121st Annual Invitational Ski Jumping and Super Tour Event
Wednesday night, Suicide Hill, Ishpeming, Michigan

 


121st Year of Ski Jumping at Suicide Hill
photo courtesy Joe LaBrecque

It's no surprise, then, once you attend a ski jumping competition at Suicide Hill, to learn that Ishpeming houses the U.S. National Ski and Snowboard Hall of Fame and Museum.

Ishpeming is "the birthplace of organized skiing in the U.S.," according to The Ski Hall of Fame and Museum web site (http://wwww.skihall.com).

The Ishpeming Ski Club, "America's oldest continuously active ski club," hosts the Annual Invitational Ski Jumping and Super Tour Event and many other thrilling ski events throughout the year (http://www.ishskiclub.com).

The Ishpeming Ski Club began in 1887, and the first tournament was held in 1888.

Suicide Hill was constructed in 1925.  More historical information is available at the Ishpeming Ski Club Web Site.


Ski jumper Wednesday night at Suicide Hill
photo courtesy Joe LaBrecque

Spectators at Wednesday's Suicide Hill Tournament hooted, hollered, and rang cowbells for the amazing ski jumpers.

About 1,000 fans socialized around the massive bonfires, tailgated in full view of the jump, or climbed the hill to stand right beside the jump landing.

Carl Pellonpaa announced the event, which included flag raising, an inspiring performance of our National Anthem, and fireworks.

Carl Pellonpaa
photo courtesy of
Da Yoopers Hall of Fame Web Site

  
Two great bonfires warmed spectators at Suicide Hill Wednesday night, while more fans lined the snowy jump landing area

Nita Englund, the only female competitor in the Juniors, and a favorite with the fans, inspired loud cheers with each powerful jump.  The 15-year-old jumper from Florence, WI, is a member of the Kiwanis Ski Club in Iron Mountain, according to Mike Ludlum, WLUC-TV6 Sports.

It was a perfect night for the ski jumpers:  no winds to speak of, about 15 degrees, and clear skies.  And for spectators, it couldn't have been better.  An exciting world-class event, great fun socializing with a jovial crowd, and a blazing bonfire for cozy comfort under a waxing quarter moon -- we couldn't ask for more!

Thanks for the entertainment and the hospitality, Ishpeming Ski Club!  Great job ski jumpers and organizers of the 121st Annual Invitational Ski Jumping and Super Tour Event!


Nita Englund, 15-year-old ski jumping competitor
Wednesday night at Suicide Hill

The Ishpeming Ski Club will host the 2008 USSA Chevrolet Junior Olympics Ski Jumping and Nordic Combined
beginning February 26, 2008, in Ishpeming, Michigan.
The event will continue through March 1st.


U.S. National Ski and Snowboard
Hall of Fame and Museum

UP Weather Channel Recognition!


Upper Peninsula rated #6
on Weather Channel's
Top 10 List of Winter Family Getaways


Full article:

Weather Channel Top 10 List
of Winter Family Getaways

 

Blazing bonfire Wednesday
Suicide Hill, Ishpeming, MI
121st Annual Invitational Ski Jumping
and Super Tour Event
(right)

UP Winter Wonderland Visual

 

Books on Skiing and Ski Jumping at Amazon.com

                   

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