WorldLoppet Delegates Meet in Hayward to Discuss Birke

By KBJR News 1

June 14, 2013 Updated Jun 15, 2013 at 12:42 PM CDT

Hayward, WI (NNCNOW.com) - Delegates from around the world are gathered in Hayward Wisconsin this weekend to talk about some of the world's largest races.

Forty one years ago, Cable and Hayward were put on the world map.

"We believe in the Worldloppet
family that the most beautiful course all over the world is the American Birkebiner course," said Angelo Corradini the Secretary General for the Birkebeiner.

Now, 16 delegates from the Worldloppet Ski Federation are holding their meeting at the home of the American Birkebeiner .

"This is where the first Birke started 41 years ago right behind me, so its kind of fun to have the international delegation here where the race stated," Ben Popp, Executive Director of the Birkebeiner.

The race was started by Tony Wise who owned Telemark Lodge, which has become the icon for the race.

"His idea was that citizen races...you and I should travel the world and ski in these great marathons in each of these countries," said Dennis Kruse one of the delegates.

Silent sports such as skiing, running, and biking contribute 60 million dollars annually, to Washburn, Sawyer, and Bayfield counties.
Also contributing to that number are lodges, such as Telemark.

"As a lot of people in this area know, Telemark is closed, but I would also say there is ongoing negotiations for ownership that will allow for Telemark to open," said Kruse.

"We communicate with Telemark partners and the bank daily, and they will continue to be the host of the Birkebeiner for years to come," added Popp.

The 41st American Birkebeiner will be held on February 22, 2014.