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The Blind River Cross Country Ski Club is a testament to community-driven passion and environmental stewardship. As a not-for-profit organization, the club relies on the dedication of volunteers who have tirelessly contributed to its growth and success.
Sally Hagman, the club's president, and her husband, Dick Hagman, the trails director, help ensure the trails are clear; this is partially accomplished through the collaborative efforts with the Town of Blind River and the Mississauga First Nation. From April to October, the Mississauga First Nation takes charge of the trails, cleaning up fallen trees, while the town keeps the grass cut so cyclists and hikers can enjoy the paths in the warmer months. In return, the Ski Club maintains the eleven kilometres of trails from October to April, providing a well-kept environment for the community.
Maintaining the trails is also accomplished through collaborative efforts like the tree-planting initiative with the town of Blind River and The Voyager Trails Association. With the help of volunteers and local classrooms, 300 trees were planted.
“We always tell the kids you're planting your legacy because you know in X number of years, those trees are going to grow up, and you can come back and say, hey, I planted that,” she says.
Sally adds that part of what makes the trails so special is their location at the mouth of the Mississagi River, providing skiers the unique opportunity to glide along the shoreline.
As the club gears up for the winter season, a ski wax clinic is scheduled for this Sunday, Dec. 10. Simultaneously, the club is launching its membership drive, encouraging enthusiasts to join the community. Sally explains that membership fees are more affordable during the weekend, with adult memberships priced at $65, children at $25, and a special rate for families; all the money is invested back into maintaining the trails.
“We’re hoping for snow,” Sally says. “We are getting ready with anticipation, and I think it’s going to be a really good year.”
To learn more about the Blind River Cross Country Ski Club, visit their Facebook page.