The event was hosted by Reindeer Run Nordic Center owners Kevin and Jenny Kelly of Empire, Michigan. The Trails were groomed to perfection thanks to Kevin's efforts. The sun was shinning. And the parents out numbered the of kids. It was truely a family event.
On Sunday, February 1st The Sleeping Bear Dunes Cross Coutnry Club held its 1st annual Pre-VASA Kids Cross Country Ski Event at Reindeer Run Nordic Center. High School team members from Glen Lake School helped to introduce cross country ski racing to local grade school and middle school skiers.
All participants practiced in warm-up drills, skiing without poles, particapated in a team relay and then skied in a FUN race. ALL finishers were awarded medals.
TV 7&4's Melissa Smith arrived in time to catch the relay and the FUN race. Melissa interviewed Kevin Kelly and some of the younger skiers. The interview aired all across Northern Michigan following the Super Bowl on TV 7&4. Kevin clearly stated it is ALL about the kids and enjoying winter! The smiles on the skiers faces said it all.
Members of the Sleeping Bear Dunes Cross Country Club have been practicing both classic and skate techniques in preparation for the White Pine and the North American VASA. The team hopes that Glen Lake School will recognize their program as an official school program next year. The team exclusively holds all their skate practices at Reindeer Run Nordic Center - located near the Empire Airport. After practices, Kevin treats the athletes to hot coccoa, hot spiced cider and homemade cookies and brownies (compliments of Kevin's wife Jenny and daughter Anna). The club house is heated, equipped with wooden benches, a couple upolstered pieces of furniture and has an authentic up north feel.
Reindeer Run Nordic Center is a labor of love. There are no set hours yet. There are no trail fees. Even the reindeer are gone, but that is another story. For more info give Kevin and Jenny a call: 231-326-5216