Press Release: National Ski Championships Coming to Whistler Olympic Park
More Athletes than 2010 Winter Games!
Whistler, BC- From March 15-30 of 2013 Whistler Olympic Park will host the “Sea to Sky Nordic Festival,” a ski event that will exceed the size and scope of the Nordic events of the 2010 Olympic Winter Games. The Festival is comprised of the National Ski Championships in the four Nordic disciplines of cross-country, biathlon, ski jumping and Nordic combined and will welcome hundreds of athletes to the Sea to Sky community.
For the first time in Canadian history, the four disciplines’ championships will be carried out together at one venue. The spectacular winter season finale will bring more competitors to Whistler Olympic Park than the 2010 Olympics with over 800 athletes in attendance. In February of 2010 there were just over 600 competitors in the four Olympic disciplines; the Festival will host 600 athletes in the cross-country competition alone.
Spectators can look forward to top-class performances just like the 2010 Games. “Canada’s elite competing will be competing in each discipline. We’re expecting cross-country World Champions Alex Harvey and Devon Kershaw and rising stars like Alexandra Pretorius to be competing in women’s ski jumping,” promises John Heilig, Sport Manager at WOP. The event will include 111 medal events- more than four times the number from the Olympics- with 60 events in cross-country, 40 in biathlon and 11 in ski jumping and Nordic combined.
“Even though Canada is a winter nation with many Nordic champions, there are very few opportunities for the public and media to see them first-hand and share in the excitement of fantastic competition. As the National Ski Association for Canada we are excited that WOP has agreed to host this new format. Spectators will be able to see our top athletes from the four disciplines at one venue with a compact program and walking distance between the different competition sites. Sport will benefit from the higher media attention and also the experience for the athletes will be more intense,” stresses Dave Pym, Managing Director of the Canadian Snowsports Association. The event is organized by a joint committee, with two local ski clubs responsible for the implementation of the different disciplines. The “Haywood Ski Nationals,” hosted by Callaghan Valley Cross Country includes the cross-country events; the Callaghan Winter Sports Club is responsible for the “Aviva Insurance Ski Jumping and Nordic Combined Nationals” and the Biathlon Nationals.
Over 500 volunteers will be needed to help deliver the high level competitions and interesting event volunteer positions are available.
Together with the Festival’s organizing committee, Whistler Olympic Park has established the Sea to Sky Nordic Festival Volunteer Program in efforts to recruit and recognize event volunteers. “We want to get the community involved in events like this. It’s crucial to have enthusiastic and energetic volunteers to successfully execute this type of event. To acknowledge their significant time and effort, we have worked out an attractive benefit system”, explained Lindsay Durno, Director of Whistler Olympic Park.
Dedicated volunteers will benefit from WOP’s “Sea to Sky Nordic Festival Volunteer Program,” entitling them to receive reward vouchers for their efforts. The vouchers can be redeemed on a variety of WOP products and services, such as free ski workshops, season pass credits and discounts on day tickets, rental equipment and retail items.
“By participating in this event, the community has the opportunity to contribute to the success of the season’s biggest ski event and meet some of Canada’s best athletes face-to-face – and be rewarded for their efforts”, says Durno.
To receive volunteer program benefits, volunteers must be willing to commit a minimum of one to 15 days between March 13 and 30. A variety of sport volunteer positions are available to help deliver the high level competitions during the Sea to Sky Nordic Festival.
For more information and to apply to volunteer, contact one of the organizing committees as below.
Callaghan Valley Cross Country Ski Club
Callaghan Winter Sports Club
Biathlon, ski jumping, Nordic combined
For more information on the event and volunteer opportunities please visit www.seatoskynordicfestival.ca.