KARBON P.I.T.A. Uniform Program

The KARBON P.I.T.A. uniform program makes it easy for you to create garments that best suit your needs. For over 25 years they’ve been delivering custom solutions for all of their partners around the globe.

Developed in collaboration with the world’s best athletes, teams, and resorts, they’ve created the most technically advanced garments that have been tested and proven in the harshest environments.

Customizing your look shouldn’t mean compromising quality. With P.I.T.A. you get proven performance with a unique style to support your team’s identity.

View the P.I.T.A. catalogue now.

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FIS GMC Cup Jan 12-15, 2023

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Happy Holidays from Alberta Alpine

We wish you good health and happiness this holiday season. 

Please note that our office will be closed for the holidays from December 23rd till January 2nd

Stay safe and healthy, and enjoy the holidays!

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The Sporting Life Ultimate Ski & Snow Event is on until November 16th!

Ski season is here — save up to 40% off at your nearest Sporting Life, or shop online.

Shop Now: https://www.sportinglife.ca/…/the-ultimate-ski-snow-event/

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Thank you for your support of the Highest Peak Gala 2022

Thank you for your support of the Highest Peak Gala 2022 and the Alberta Ski Team. The community support was truly overwhelming, from sponsors, volunteers, speakers, live & silent auction donors, raffle supporters, alumni, the Malcolm Hotel and everyone who came out to support the athletes and inductees.

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Terry Maddison: President’s Award

As with many of the inductees to the Canadian Rockies Ski Racing Hall of Fame, Terry Maddison’s beginnings in the sport were humble and happenstance. His involvement, however, has grown along with his family, and he has become an instrumental part of the success of many ski racing clubs in Alberta. Our Sport and community are incredibly lucky to have this wonderful, enjoyable, and resourceful person in our midst. 

Growing up as teenager in Edmonton, Terry remembers that his first ski outing came about when a girlfriend asked him to join her. Eager to impress, off he went, but what stands out in his memory was the full yard-sale he took when his snowy ski boots slipped on the concrete cafeteria floor of the Lake Eden Ski Hill! He persevered and his love of skiing grew during a trip to Marmot Basin in Grade 12 and was further cemented when he skipped his Grade 12 Physics final exam to go skiing. He continued to ski as a University of Alberta student and it was the big school trips to exotic locales, such as Fortress in 1979, and his bright yellow ski boots that still make him smile. 

Terry’s involvement in skiing was his own choice – his family had no history in Alpine skiing although his father had skied cross country to and from school in Estonia before immigrating to Canada in 1952. This would contrast years later with Terry and wife Pamela’s own young family and their involvement in alpine racing. Son Andy was playing hockey, but they felt their daughter Rebecca needed an organized sport activity of her own and after much research, they landed at Norquay’s Bow Valley Quikies then run by Ellen Brenner. Andy soon “saw the light,” started to ski with the club, and continues to this day as a U14 coach with Banff Alpine Racers while Rebecca coaches at BVQ. 

Terry has strong opinions about ski racing being an exceptional sport for a family over many others and strongly believes that “being in a high-level sport develops discipline in young athletes and promotes making good life-choices. It gives them a sense of belonging and helps them to not drift away.” As the days on snow increased each week, the family embraced it and found a weekend home close to the hill. For Terry, it was incredibly rewarding – he loved watching his own and other kids develop and have fun. As well, he loved that “an important part of the sport is how kids connect with others – even at other clubs. Your own club becomes less important and, for families as well, your social circle grows and will last long past the end of direct involvement in the sport.” 

This insight into and love of the sport led Terry to bring ski racing into his professional life. As the Director of Accounting Services and Controller for Jack Carter Chevrolet Cadillac Buick GMC Ltd., Terry saw an important need that Alberta Clubs had that his automotive dealership organization could address – guidance and support in the provision and management of fleet vehicles for moving equipment and athletes to the hills around the province and further afield for training and racing. Although he’s quick to insist these relationships, some of which have run for over 15 years, benefit Jack Carter tremendously, they have been absolute and positive game-changers to the clubs, athletes, and families in the sport. Terry was the catalyst and took the initiative to bring these two worlds together.

Prior to his long-term role at Jack Carter, Terry was lured away from Edmonton to Calgary work at another dealership, GSL. Not long after starting there, his long commitment to volunteering began when co-workers convinced him to come along to an information evening at the Calgary Zoo after which he became a Docent and Educator there for many years. In ski racing, Terry remains an active and important volunteer and is often the Chief of Gates at races at Norquay and elsewhere. Outside of skiing, family life and work, Terry is an avid road-cyclist and is still involved in German folk dancing, where he first met Pamela.

Besides Pamela, Terry would like to recognize Kari Gordon, Damien Mills, Robb Beeman, Dr. Scott Timmermann, Bob Vargo, Sandy Webster, and Gregg Ferguson as important influencers in the sport.

Terry Maddison is an alumni member of the Banff Alpine Racers and Bow Valley Quikies, a past Director of those clubs, and a senior official in the sport. 

Congratulations! 

Please join us on November 8th at the Malcolm Hotel in Canmore to honour the Class of 2022.

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The Highest Peak Gala 2022 – Auction Items

Join us at the Highest Peak Gala 2022 and take part in our amazing auction!

WHERE: The Malcolm Hotel, Canmore

WHEN: Tuesday, November 8, 2022

TIME: 5:30 pm

REGISTRATION INCLUDES: Cocktail Hour, Buffet Style Dinner, Entertainment, Canadian Rockies Ski Racing Hall of Fame Awards Presentation.

AUCTION ITEMS:
-Exclusive Don Bell Eastern Rockies helicopter tour, with departure and return from Springbank Airport.
-Calgary Stampede Chuckwagon Experience. Enjoy a unique experience at the 2023 Rangeland Derby, donated by the Calgary Stampede Chuckwagon Committee.
-A day of skiing (for a party of 4) with Alberta Ski Team athletes during their Nakiska training block in March 2023.

Please note that if you cannot attend and are interested in these incredible experiences, reach out to memberservices@albertalpine.ca to discuss the option of having a proxy available.

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Andrew Abbott: Honoured Volunteer

Dedication to athletes and relentless effort to providing outstanding events in our community.

Canmore, AB – People familiar with Ski Racing understand there are a few typical paths to falling in lifelong love with the sport: either your family has participated for generations or someone in the family has accomplished great success… Andrew Abbott took a path little travelled.  Known to many as AA (pronounced: Eh! Eh! Double Eh! A Squared, or many other variations), Andrew is well known in the ski community not because he was a famous Canadian Downhiller, or married a ski racer, or was the son of ski racers.  No, Andrew is a familiar name because of the countless hours he’s spent on the hill supporting our racers. 

Andrew’s ski story begins at the age of 5 when his parents decided to move the family out West to Calgary.  Peering up at slopes of the Rocky Mountains his parents thought if they were going to live here Andrew better learn how to ski.  He quickly took to the sport and was encouraged by his instructors to join SkiMeisters at Mount Norquay where he entered the Nancy Greene program.  Andrew discovered early on that his passion was not to be on the National Team but instead “be able to ski anything, anywhere with anyone!” He also knew that the best way to refine these skills was through ski race programs.  He remembers the great advice given by coaches like Glenn Thomsen, Ken Marchand, Vanita Haining, Cam and Stu Bailey, and Dave Greig who kept on pushing him to improve as he worked his way into racing FIS.

Not long thereafter, school and business took over the majority Andrew’s time but the sport was not forgotten.  He realized he had entered the next phase of his love for the sport… a bit of coaching and volunteering lead him to a conversation with Mike Irwin and Cam Bailey.  They convinced Andrew to join them at Interbourse, the annual international stock exchange ski race championship. This annual event brings together many former top athletes who work in the industry where these captains of finance compete head-to-head.  Andrew’s first competition was in Aspen in 1996, the Alberta Team won its first Interbourse Championship!  The competitive nature of the event re-ignited his passion for the sport and Andrew would spend the next 20 years travelling the World to well-known Ski Racing destinations like Kitzbuhel, Wengen, Val d’Isere, Chamonix and St. Anton contributing to the success of Team Alberta at many Interbourse Championships.

Exposure to these epic Ski Racing destinations inspired him to re-commit to the sport and again begin to volunteer and support the young racers of the next generation.  He would spend time earning credentials and watching the “dedication of others like Marj Ritchey, Dorothy Bailey, Mike and Bill Irwin, Darrell McLachlan, Doug Campbell, Randy Tarchuk, Lisa Thomson and countless others who have spent tireless hours ensuring safe and fair ski racing exists in Alberta and Canada.”  He admits he was fortunate to “learn from the best, so he too could help and give back to the ski community”.  This crew of volunteers has earned a deserved reputation as one the most efficient and reliable race organizers in North America. 

Among numerous Nor-Am and FIS officials’ postings, Andrew’s greatest accomplishment, so far, was the recent World Junior Ski Championship in Panorama 2022 where he was Chief of Race for the Slaloms.  A slalom track that’s gained an international reputation as the toughest technical track in Canada.  Andrew comments: “It was fantastic to contribute to the success of the next generation… helping to provide a safe and challenging venue for all competitors”. 

Andrew independently paved his own way into the ski racing world.  He is thankful for his wife Carolyne “who has let (him) live out childhood dreams of racing again and exploring the world”.  He also recognizes he could not have accomplished all he has without the support of his parents and his siblings.

When asked about what advice he would like to pass on to young racers Andrew comments “Work hard to attain your goals and keep pushing to be better – your dedication to the sport will provide you with the life skills to assist you in your future success”.  Andrew recognizes the sport provided him skills such as perseverance, risk management, independence and initiative which have all contributed to his success on the hill and in the business world.

Well done Andrew!

The Canadian Rockies Ski Racing Hall of Fame is pleased to recognize Andrew Abbott, our 2022 Honoured Volunteer, for a lifetime of passion for ski racing and as an ambassador to the sport.

Please join us on November 8th at the Malcolm Hotel in Canmore to honour the Class of 2022.

Author: Geoff Irwin

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Todd McNutt: Honoured Athlete, Official and Leader

Sharing a lifelong passion for speed and sharing experience through leadership.

Canmore, AB – My ski racing journey began in 1975 with the Skimeisters NGSL at Mount Norquay. Not only did we begin to develop our skills as young ski racers we also developed the grip strength of rodeo cowboys hanging on for dear life on the Memorial rope tow. ‘

Under the direction of Ken Marchand I learned very early that 100% effort every day, every time was the standard to live by. To this day those ethics I learned way back in the day still apply.

I remember dryland training at River Park was essentially a 10k cross country race every week. I was very fortunate to have competed in the days of the Crazy Canucks. These guys were our idols and mentors and of course DH was the name of the game.

Most of my memories are from the many DH events we competed in. Of note the Whitefish DH is a favorite. A van load of us aspiring Crazy Canucks arrived in Whitefish under the direction of Dave Greig. As per usual the Whitefish track was in great condition with some great jumps and wide open turns. The weather however was another story. Preparing for the first training run, the Start Referee stated that because of the low light conditions “Athletes please! This training run is only to be run at 60%!!” I remember looking at ‘Coach Greig’ and asking “so what does that mean?” Dave responded “what do YOU think that means?” I got the message. I proceeded to the start gate and got the start cadence from the starter and blasted out pushing and skating to the first gate. The Start Ref burst outside the tent and screamed at the line-up of athletes ready to go. “I said PLEASE ONLY 60%’” Dave told me later that my old pal Gord Taciuk looked at the starter, leaning on his poles and said “That was 60%” ……I think we had a pretty good weekend down there.

The next season, in 1983, I made the Alberta Ski Team under the coaching staff of Jacques Morel and Glenn Thomson. So many great memories but again, the DH stories are the most memorable. I wasn’t the fastest dude out there, but I could hold my own and I always worked hard, sometimes too hard. I remember vividly racing in the Rossland DH. The week of terror. Fast, rough and always foggy Rossland was our own little Kitzbuhel. The Canadian Champs were held there that year and we were all eager for great results. My day however did not go as planned as I was yellow flagged on the top pitch and had to return for a re-run. As it turned out my re-run was slotted in at the end because of the long turn around. So I finally made it back to the start, armed with my ‘never anything less than 100%’ attitude and blasted into the fog on the ridge then a hard left footer onto the steep pitch above the Women’s Start. In full view of the entire Women’s field at 70 mph I hooked an edge and exploded into the compression losing everything including 1 glove and my helmet!….day over. Unfortunately I also caused a fair bit of trepidation to the Women’s field as they watched in horror before their run.

Another highlight was forerunning the 1983 Lake Louise WC DH. Rubbing elbows with all of my ski racing heroes was incredible. Looking back at how Lake Louise has evolved from those early days is amazing. In 1983 we started from the very top of the Summit Platter lift. I remember during inspection thinking to myself “JEEZ this is gonna be fast”. Based on the forerunners the set was way too fast. They shut it down and lowered the start! I thought ,hey this is WC I thought it was supposed to be like that!!

I retired from ski racing in 1984/85 and transitioned to my new sport of Cycling through the summer program Skimeisters started called “Cyclemeisters” under the direction of Ed Novotini. I balanced my Cycling career with both University and coaching with the Mount Norquay Racing Club from 1985 to 1995 (now known as CARC).

This new passion took me all the way to the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games where I competed in the 100K Team Time Trial and. after the Games I turned professional and competed in the Professional World Championships in Benidorm Spain. Cycling had definitely taken over but I remained committed to ski racing now as a coach with MNRC. Coaching the Alberta Team at the ‘Topolino’ Children’s event in Monte Bondone, Italy in 1993 was a highlight for me in my coaching career.

Life goes on and in 1993 my wife Joanne and I started a family and our first was born in July of 1993. Gavin entered the world and shortly thereafter Kerri arrived. Another transition from career coaching to a career with Calgary Police Service (CPS) and now, volunteering as a ski racing parent.

The connection with our ski racing community and volunteer involvement has been a grounding and very rewarding part of my life while being a member of CPS. I owe a lot to those who encouraged me to continue as a ROC member, Board member (South Zone Chair 2007-2011) and as an official. Jim Brewington, Bruce Hamstead and Darrell McLaughlin are my mentors and friends that I hold dear. And of course, Bob Leitch my good buddy and sidekick though out this life long ski racing journey. It was 2006 when Bruce Hamstead floated the idea of Bob and I running the Nor Am DH at LL…….I was terrified but also excited at the prospect. 18 years later I think we can say that it was a great success and a significant legacy for our sport. Jim Brewington nominated me as a FIS TD Candidate and I earned my FIS TD Licence in 2014. As a FIS Technical Delegate, it has been incredibly rewarding to work with various Race Organizing Committees throughout the country. The highlight has been the Men’s WC DH at Beaver Creek in 2017.

I believe that none of the great people who have received this recognition before me set out for these honors. They all have contributed for the love of the sport, and to be a part of a family of great people who come together year after year to share in the best sport in the world.

The Canadian Rockies Ski Racing Hall of Fame is pleased to recognize Todd McNutt, our 2022 Honoured Alberta Ski Team Alumni, official and sport leader, for a lifetime of passion for ski racing and working to provide safe environments and opportunity for speed events as a respected international leader. Dave Greig interviewed our Honoured Inductee.

Please join us on November 8th at the Malcolm Hotel in Canmore to honour the Class of 2022.

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Bill & Carla Wearmouth: Honoured Pioneers

Providing leadership with World Cup and Olympic events and within the ski community.

Canmore, AB – Bill and Carla Wearmouth moved mountains to support ski racing in Alberta from the 1960’s to the early 90’s and it is an honour to induct them into the Canadian Rockies Ski Racing Hall of Fame. Together they had 9 kids (kind of a Brady Bunch type family) and put all of them through ski racing. In the early years they volunteered at entry level races. Bill once made a comment on how unorganized a particular race was that he was helping at. Another volunteer said “well if you can do better then be my guest.” He was Chief of Race at the next event. That began his 30 year volunteer journey, and Carla jumped right in. Bill was a force. He was Race Chair or Chief of Race at numerous Pontiac and Shell Cup races in the 70’s. Possibly his greatest impact and contribution was his role with the first World Cup Downhill run in Canada: Lake Louise in 1980.

The final downhill of the World Cup Tour at Chamonix, France had been cancelled and the FIS wanted to choose a venue, as the downhill title had not been won.. Following a dramatic negotiation between World Cup Chairman Serge Lang and Canada’s World Cup subcommittee member Peter Andrews, it came down to Bad Kleinkirchheim, Austria and Lake Louise, Canada.

With sponsors and a keen venue in-hand Canada was awarded the bid. But who was to lead a Race Committee with limited international experience and four weeks to put the project together?

Bill stepped up.

A Race Chairman for this dedicated team of volunteers, hotel rooms were found, the race track built, safety installed, timing wiring strung, TV cable rolled out, sponsors and funds found.  And on Wednesday, March 4,, 1980 history was made in front of an estimated crowd of 10,000 who came out to watch the speed skiers of World Cup alpine ski racing.

The event was a huge success, marking the beginning of a Canadian World Cup Legacy that has lasted for 42 years. Delivering a race on such short notice with an entirely volunteer crew so impressed FIS President Marc Hodler he later stated this competition the watershed moment in Calgary’s push for the 1988 Olympic Winter Games.

Bill was unbelievably dedicated to safety in ski racing. He designed the first A Net and had the Alberta Team athletes build it in his garage for the 1980 WC. There was one piece used on Coaches Corner and one piece used on the top of the island on C turn. He actually invented the Willy Bag which many of us are personally thankful for.  Over many years that followed, Bill went on the Race Chair/Chief of Race numerous WC races, NorAm’s, Juvenile Nationals, Westerns, Provincial races. If he wasn’t running the race he could always be found as Starter or even Gatekeeping. He was the lead on the mountain selection committee for the ‘88 Olympics, Chairman of Alpine Events for ‘88 and Chief of Race for the Ladies DH and SG.  What a legacy!!

Carla was with Bill all the way and also worked tirelessly on and off the hill to support Alpine ski racing at the local and world level. She created and began Alpine Chair of the Rocky View Ski Racing Team at Norquay, Lyon Mountain Racing Team at Lyon Mountain (which became Wintergreen) and eventually the Kananaskis Alpine Ski Club which still exists today at Nakiska. She filled roles such as chief of hostessing at many events including the 1980 WC and Shell Cup at Lake Louise, and was Chief of Course Control at the ’88 Olympics.

Many of us in this room remember Carla at nearly all the local races, always on the course volunteering and pitching in wherever needed. She even stepped in as club van driver. Her dedication was immense.

We are reminded of the legacy left by the Wearmouth’s each time we watch the World Cup opener at Lake Louise. Thousands of aspiring Alberta athletes have trained and raced at Nakiska where their youngest son, Scott now heads up the local events. Bill and Carla were true Pioneers in the sport.

The Canadian Rockies Ski Racing Hall of Fame is pleased to recognize Bill and Carla Wearmouth, our 2022 Honoured Pioneers, for a lifetime of passion for ski racing and ski community leadership.

Author: Tasha Tallas

Please join us on November 8th at the Malcolm Hotel in Canmore to honour the Class of 2022.

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Maureen O’Hara-Leman: Honoured Builder

A transformative leader who has shaped and lifted our sport.

Canmore, AB – Through five decades of dedication, Maureen O’Hara-Leman has taken the enthusiasm she discovered for skiing with her Dad and shared it through instruction, coaching and leadership.

Maureen was first introduced to skiing as an 11-year old when her family moved to Calgary. The oldest of 4 children (3 younger brothers, all hockey players), Maureen signed up for ski lessons on arrival in Calgary at the legendary Happy Valley Ski Hill (now Valley Ridge community). She was hooked and it became the special thing she did with her dad.

Maureen’s passion for skiing grew exponentially.  In high school, she always had a season pass at Lake Louise and it was nothing to drive to/from the mountains both days on weekends to ski.  Loving both skiing and a challenge, she commenced her CSIA designation while still in High School.  She gained experience teaching skiing in those early days at Happy Valley, then Paskapoo (Canada Olympic Park).   Part of the ski school experience included races, in which Maureen loved and excelled. 

Maureen moved onto the pursuit of a University Education. While in university, the sport kept pulling her back to the skiing world making her completion of her degree a bit non-conventional due to taking several years off to spend winters on the slopes in Western Canada. She eventually returned to school at the University of Guelph where they recruited her to the Alpine Ski Team because she was from Alberta and could ski!!  That was the introduction to FIS like racing and slalom and GS.

After graduation, Maureen returned to Calgary to work at Mount Royal College teaching Anatomy and Physiology to nursing students for the next couple of years and continued to actively ski and teach part time.  The contract with MRC left the summers open and she spent 5 summers in New Zealand eventually moving to teaching year round, New Zealand in the summers and Europe in the winters for Club Med.  While with the Ecole de Ski Francais in those European locations, it was a requirement to train slalom and GS.  By the time Maureen returned to Lake Louise Ski School she was well acquainted with running gates, and by this time, she had her Level III CSIA Level II certification. in 1980, she returned to Calgary to teach one more winter at MRU, of course teaching and skiing at Lake Louise on the side.  It was at Lake Louise where she met her husband Chris who had just embarked on his alpine coaching career. They were married and moved back to Calgary in 1984.

Following a brief exploration with a conventional career, and the arrival of her first child Brady, Maureen returned to the world of ski school operations.  Maureen ran the ski school at Wintergreen for 5 years, followed by 10 years at C.O.P.    During this time, Maureen and Chris had a second child, Kayla, and the family was pulled further into the world of ski racing in Alberta with Chris accepting head coach roles, first with Banff Alpine Racers (BAR), followed by Mt Norquay ski club and eventually Calgary Alpine (CARC). Soon after, the children took a lead role, as their natural skiing talent quickly made itself evident.  Many of us with children skiing in that era recall Brady near the top of the finish results, and Kayla “dominating her K1-K2 races. 

In 2001 Maureen accepted the role as President , Alberta Alpine where she spent the next 7 years coordinating, organizing, building and  promoting the sport of  ski racing programs in Alberta.

Along the way, you can imagine how many skills Maureen had honed as she ran ski schools, built provincial ski racing programs, assisted ski clubs on how to host races and run programs, managed general chaos, recruited and organized volunteers, assisted with timing in the early days of ski cross.  Collectively all of these things made her a cherished contributor in the world of ski racing in our province.    Her list of accomplishments and contributions are many:

  • Timing crew work from Nancy Greene thru to Nor Ams over a period of 20+  years.
  • Ski Cross ladder and results person in the early development of the sport
  • Bozo and Kinder Cup start, board and result management since inception (circa 1997)
  • Race Chair/Chief of volunteers Lake Louise Nor Ams
  • Participation as the Leader Board and Scoring lead at the World Junior Alpine Champs

Before retiring, Maureen’s career shifted away from snowsports, as Director of Volunteers CEO for WorldSkills Calgary 2009. But the call of winter pulled her back as Executive Director for Canadian Association for Disabled Skiing (CADS), now known as Canadian Adaptive Snowsports.

Maureen’s fondest memories are of the many other volunteers, parents and officials she met over these years working races, watching the athletes progress and making lifelong friends.  Highlights are the many years working on the Lake Louise Nor Am races alongside many outstanding volunteers and the early years of contributing to/supporting the development and execution of Ski Cross Nationals / Nor Ams.

For Maureen and Chris, watching her children grow and develop in the sport, include the extraordinary highlights of Kayla winning Gold and Bronze medals at the Canadian K2 National Championships when she was 14 and being at the finish line when Brady won Olympic Gold medal in the 2018 Games of PeyongChang, Korea

Maureen says:  “When we are promoting the sport of Alpine Skiing and boldly stating that participation in ski racing programs teaches life skills, develops good life management tactics and coping skills, this is not exaggerating.  It is a very accurate description of the abilities of the vast majority of our alumni athletes.”

Maureen would counsel upcoming racers:  “have fun (you can quit anytime you aren’t enjoying it), listen to your coaches, race as fast as you can, enjoy your mountain time, be nice to your friends and family, it’s easier to climb the ladder than fall off, be proud of what you accomplish.   It all adds up.”

The Canadian Rockies Ski Racing Hall of Fame is pleased to recognize Maureen O’Hara-Leman, our 2022 Honoured Builder, for a lifetime of commitment to alpine ski racing.

Please join us on November 8th at the Malcolm Hotel in Canmore to honour the Class of 2022.

Author: Vanita Haining.

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The Highest Peak Gala 2022

WHERE: The Malcolm Hotel, Canmore

WHEN: Tuesday, November 8, 2022

TIME: 5:30 pm

REGISTRATION INCLUDES: Cocktail Hour, Buffet Style Dinner, Entertainment, Canadian Rockies Ski Racing Hall of Fame Awards Presentation.

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