Sugarloaf to host MHS barbecue

Posted March 20, 2009, at 11:05 p.m.

CARRABASSETT VALLEY, Maine — Maine Handicapped Skiing will host an informational event and barbecue lunch at Sugarloaf on March 28.

The event, which will run from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m., will be held on The Beach in front of the base lodge.

About 50 MHS volunteers and participants will discuss the program and demonstrate equipment and techniques used by skiers and riders with physical disabilities at Sugarloaf each Saturday and Sunday during the ski season.

A barbecue fundraiser will follow from 11:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m., featuring a hamburger, beverage, chips and a cookie for $15.

Door prizes will be drawn at 1 p.m. Tickets are on sale at MHS’s headquarters at Sunday River, and can also be purchased at the event.

All proceeds from this event will go toward providing MHS’s year-round recreational programs completely free of charge to all participants, as MHS has done for its entire 27-year history.

Maine Handicapped Skiing, a non-profit organization, was founded in 1982 to provide free adaptive recreation opportunities for children and adults with physical disabilities.

The organization serves more than 300 participants statewide through year-round programs that include Alpine and Nordic skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, golf, canoeing, kayaking, and cycling.

Each year, Maine Handicapped Skiing raises roughly 65 percent of its annual operating budget at the annual Ski-A-Thon event at Sunday River, which takes place today.

However, the organization is devoting additional resources to raising awareness about its robust Sugarloaf program, which serves nearly 20 participants each weekend throughout the ski season.

MHS is also providing free round-trip transportation to Sugarloaf for participants from the Bangor area.

For more information on the event at Sugarloaf or any other Maine Handicapped Skiing programs or events, please contact Eric Topper, Director of Outreach at 824-2440 ext. 107 or etopper@skimhs.org.

Maine skiers ready for nationals

Two Maine skiers are preparing to compete at the U.S. National Alpine Championships March 24-29 at Alyeska Resort in Girdwood, Alaska.

Ben Morse, 16, of Carrabassett Valley is a senior at Carrabassett Valley Academy. Morse is ranked as one of the best young skiers in America after winning two gold medals at the J2 2009 U.S. National Alpine Championships, hosted at Aspen Colo. This will be Morse‘s second U.S. National Championship.

Sam Sweetser, 24, of Cumberland Center, a graduate of Carrabassett Valley Academy, is a member of the USSA Western Region Elite Ski Team. He placed fifth in the 2008 U.S. national downhill last March at Sugarloaf and continues to fight for a spot on the U.S. Ski Team. This will be Sweetser’s sixth U.S. national championship.

Both will compete in all four events: the downhill, super-G, giant slalom and slalom.

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