The Dion Snowshoe Championships are coming to Southern Vermont
BENNINGTON, Vt. - The 2014 Dion Snowshoes U.S. National Snowshoe Championships are coming to the beautiful, historic town of Bennington, Vermont on Saturday and Sunday March 1 and 2.
“We’re excited to have the opportunity to show winter sports enthusiasts from around the country why Bennington is a top destination for all kinds of snow sports,” says race director Dave Newell. “Hosting a U.S. Championship really puts Bennington on the map as a top destination for elite Winter sporting events.” He adds.
The races will take place at Prospect Mountain Nordic Ski Center, eight miles east of Bennington on Vermont Route 9. Sitting at a base elevation of over 2,200’ (the highest in the Northeast), and positioned directly east of the Great Lakes snow belt, Prospect is known throughout the region for its epic, deep, white, fluffy snow.
The competition features a 10K championship race for men and women, a 5K championship race for juniors and four “open” events that don’t require qualifying or USSSA membership. These events include a ‘gentle’ 5K Community Race and a ‘Kid’s Kilo’ on Saturday after the championships, and on Sunday there will be a 4 by 2.5K Relay and a 100 meter ‘Uphill Challenge’ known as the ‘Sap Run’. This unique event has racers sprinting up an alpine skiing slope at a 30% grade for 100 meters – while holding a gallon of Vermont maple syrup. The top three men and women get to take home the syrup. Loaner snowshoes will be available for anyone who’d like to try one of these events. They are provided by lead event Sponsor, Dion Snowshoes, headquartered in Bennington, Vermont.
“Some of these categories are tailored for newcomers to the sport, so it truly is an inclusive event,” said Mark Elmore, president of the U.S. Snowshoe Association.
This event is expected to attract over 400 competitors from all over the U.S. and abroad. At this time there are 22 U.S. states and 10 countries represented at the championships. Spectators are encouraged to attend. There is no admission charge.
For the first time in the history of the Snowshoe Championships, team scoring has been added to the mix. So teams from around the country (and world) will be competing for top snowshoe team honors.
There are also International Divisions and All-Military Divisions being contested. The 2012 and 2013 World Snowshoe Champions from Québec will be in attendance to test themselves against the best the U.S. has to offer.
So if you want to experience the magic of Winter in Vermont and participate in an amazing weekend of racing and outdoor adventure, come to Bennington and see what all the fuss is about.