ABSF Donates $50,000 in Appreciation for Volunteerism & Support

Hayward, Wis. (April 19, 2016) – The American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation (ABSF) presented a check for $50,000 to Hayward’s Superintendent of Schools, Craig Olson, at the April 18 Hayward Community School Board meeting. In front of a standing room only crowd comprised of school board members, educators, and community members, Ben Popp, ABSF Executive Director, made the donation on behalf of the ABSF board of directors and in support and appreciation of the collaborative relationship between the Hayward Schools and the Birkie.

“Central to the ABSF’s mission is enabling and inspiring a healthy lifestyle for the next generation. The Hayward Schools are the perfect medium to help make that happen,” said Ben Popp, ABSF Executive Director. “Just as they support the Birkie, the ABSF is here to support the schools as much as we can, too.”

Each year as part of the American Birkebeiner week of festivities, the Hayward Community Schools play a part in helping to host the world in Hayward, Wisc. In February 2016, Hayward School facilities and grounds were used for spectator parking, the Birkebeiner Expo, skier registration, bib pick-up, a warm changing area for all skiers after race completion, and as a central bus hub location during Birkie events.

“It takes a village to host the estimated 40,000 skiers and spectators who come to Hayward for the American Birkebeiner week of Nordic festivities,” continued Popp. “From warm spaces and infrastructure to volunteers and services, the community is ultimately what allows the Birkie to happen every year and the school district is at the core of it all. We are incredibly grateful for their ongoing support of Birkie events.”

“It is completely above and beyond my expectations that the American Birkebeiner continues to show such great support to the Hayward Community School District,” stated Craig Olson, Superintendent – Hayward Community School District. “They have consistently shown their commitment to the Hayward School District and the community. I look forward to many more years of being part of such a great world-class event.”

The Birkie has grown to encompass a variety of year-round, silent sport events that promote a healthy, active lifestyle for thousands of outdoor fitness enthusiasts. In addition, the ABSF acts as steward of the legendary Birkie Trail, providing year-round grooming, mowing and maintenance to all 107 kilometers. A nonprofit organization, the ABSF is fiscally responsible for maintaining 100 percent of the Birkie Trail system in Sawyer and Bayfield counties. The ABSF is funded through race fees, membership dues, sponsorships, and donations; it receives no local, state, or federal tax money.

About the American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation and Birkie Events

Located near Hayward and Cable, Wisconsin, the American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation (ABSF), a 501c3 organization, is perhaps best known for its signature American Birkebeiner Ski Marathon held each February. Today, however, the Birkie represents a variety of year-round, silent sport events that promote a healthy, active lifestyle for thousands of outdoor fitness enthusiasts. From the iconic American Birkebeiner ski race, to the Birkie Trail Run & Trek, and Fat Bike Birkie, the ABSF and the Birkie Trail attract skiers, runners, bikers, trekkers, and hikers, from casual day-trippers to elite athletes. BIRKIE Ski. Run. Bike. Live!

Learn more www.birkie.com