Boys and girls snowboarders closed out the state meet in the halfpipe at the Oregon Interscholastic Snowboard Association (OISA) Saturday. The 11th state championships brought more than 200 prep athletes from nearly 30 schools across Oregon to Mount Hood Meadows Ski Resort for three days of competition beginning on Thursday. "The girls did awesome. The guy are throwing down great runs," OISA President Chip Treadwell said. "I think most of the kids had a great time."
GOVERNMENT CAMP - Hood River Valley, led by a dominating performance from its boys team, won the combined title for the first time in more than 15 years at the Oregon Interscholastic Ski Racing Association state finals Thursday and Friday at Mt. Hood Meadows. Colton Swearingen won the giant slalom and finished third in the slalom to claim the boys individual title and lead the boys team to the top combined finish. Hood River's girls got a seventh-place finish from Morgan Nance, but its depth helped it finish second in the team standings.
Once upon a time, ski jumping showed itself in Oregon. In fact, it showed up, of all places, the former Multnomah Stadium - now PGE Park. Back in the days when Portlanders were being cajoled into voting for the funds to build Memorial Coliseum as well as the Oregon Zoo, ski jumpers flew before a packed crowd - thanks to snow imported from Mt. Hood.
A reported 200 tons of snow, produced by four large ice-making machines, allowed for the event to take place during the 1953 Rose Festival. The Cascade Ski Club produced the event to promote skiing on Mt. Hood. As many as 40,000 spectators witnessed the event, which also included slalom skiing.
The temporary ramp erected in Portland was one of numerous promotions around the U.S. in the 30s, 40s, 50s and 60s. Ski jump ramps showed up at Soldier Field in Chicago, the Los Angeles Coliseum, even Dodger Stadium in 1963.
Ski jumping in Oregon began in January 1929 on what is now the Cooper Spur ski area. Clubs from Oregon and Seattle competed against one another, according to historic records maintained by the Cascade Ski Club. The club eventually built runs for competitors at four different skill levels.
The Mountain View Speedskating Club is nearing the close of its practice schedule for November and December and hoping to locate enough new members to be able to continue in January and February.
The club, which formed after the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics, has nearly 30 members and practices at Mountain View Ice Arena in Vancouver, Wash. Finding ice time has been an issue, though, says club founder Patty Brennan.
“Hockey dominates the area rinks, so it’s a challenge to find a consistent time to be able to practice,” Brennan says. “And, it’s kind of expensive to rent a rink.”
The club, which will hold it’s final practice of the year at 9:30 a.m., Dec. 20, charges a drop-in rate of $15 per session with skates included.
“It’s fabulous conditioning,” Brennan says. “You just need to know how to skate and turn left.”
The Mountain View club is the lone one in the Portland area.
The practices, all of which involve short-track skill-building, often attract former Olympians who have moved to the Portland metro area.
Becky Sundstrom, an Olympian in 1998 and ‘02 in long course skating, is a regular at practices.
American Shani Davis is a favorite to win at least one gold medal at the Vancouver Winter Games.