By Jake Bright
The wait is over. NASTAR’s 2016 Nationals program begins today, Monday, March 21. Skiers and boarders from across the country are streaming into Steamboat Resort for the championships of the world’s largest recreational race program.
The weeklong program of alpine racing, events, and fun kicks off with the chance to participate in Steamboat-hosted race clinics today, tomorrow, March 22; and Wednesday, March 23.
Final check-in for confirmed competitors begins Tuesday at 8 a.m. at Steamboat Grand Burgress Creek and Mountain View Foyer Room. The resort’s public NASTAR course will also be open through Wednesday (at $5 per run) for competitors looking to polish up their skills before official competition begins Thursday, March 24 and continues through the 27th.
In addition to the racing, NASTAR Nationals week offers the opportunity to meet fellow alpinists from all over the country.
There are competitors such as Pat Moore, from the Connecticut Ski Council. The NASTAR enthusiast, who has a customized NASTAR license plate on his car, will double up at Steamboat to compete in the 65 to 69 alpine Platinum division and in his snowboard division.
From New Jersey, brothers Joshua Rosenberg (11) and Ethan (7), who race NASTAR at Vermont’s Okemo Mountain, will compete in GS and slalom after a season of training to get atop the podium. Eighty-year-old Herbert Maierle from New York City will participate in his 11th Nationals, attempting to win his Gold Division for a sixth time. And sisters Kylee and Eryn Warren, ages 7 and 10, from Winchester, California, both hope to ski their best and “have fun”.
Nationals is all about having fun, and there’s plenty to do off the racecourse, too. NASTAR’s stage will have live music, including performances by musical acts 6 Million Dollar Band Thursday from 3 to 4 p.m. and Australian group Jakubi on Saturday from 3 to 4 pm. Awards ceremonies, during which NASTAR competitors receive medals and win prizes from U.S. Ski Team pacesetters and ambassadors, kick off the evening of Thursday, March 24.
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