Monday, April 27, 2015
What a fun and festive evening that was, at Rune and Augustina's house for the Momentum Northwest fundraiser! We ate, we drank, we talked about skiing and trail running and triathlon and cycling bad-ass mountains, we met new people with interesting sports stories. It was excellent!
The evening's highlight was a presentation about the first year of Momentum Northwest by coach Sam Naney. The kids have had a darn good year, people, in spite of the crummy snow conditions. They trained hard last summer -- roller skiing, trail running, and strength training-- and they kept it up right through the winter, roller skiing in the rain when there wasn't enough snow to ski on. They went to Silver Star for an early-season training camp and headed to races in the Methow, Bend, and Soldier Hollow, Utah -- Sam says he put 15,000 miles on the Momentum van between October and March! -- and the kids found they could hold their own against kids who had much better snow conditions this winter. That's a big confidence booster heading into a new training year, and every single kid in the program is coming back, except for two, who reluctantly are dropping out only because their families are moving out of the state or out of the country. That's a pretty strong endorsement for the program!
Others involved in the program spoke up also. Volunteer coach Halvard described the excitement and satisfaction the kids feel from putting in one hard workout after another and seeing the results, and discovering that yes, if you train hard and train consistently, you WILL get better and you WILL race faster. Good lesson for all of us! And volunteer coach Suzanne gave an enthusiastic thumbs up to the program; she has 40 years of experience dealing with teaching kids, and she knows a good set-up when she sees one! Another cool thing: Sam sees this program as working together with the other local clubs like the Methow and Leavenworth and Bush School, rather than in competition with them. Ideas are shared, and kids are directed to the program that best suits them; having a variety of choices in the Pacific Northwest makes it a win-win for everyone.
So we got out our checkbooks, to help the team along into its second year. Sam has exciting plans for the coming year, including getting another van to help with the logistics and hiring a second coach to better manage the growing number of participants. Two big pieces of information: the team just got its official 501(c)(3) status, which means your donation is a tax deduction, and the mysterious and awesome matching donor will match any and all donations made before June 1. So if you intended to come and couldn't make it, you missed a wonderful evening but you haven't missed your chance to help out. Head on over to Momentumnorthwest.org and chip in if you can -- skiing is life, and these kids are the future!