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2017 ASJ Hall of Fame Banquet Held August 5 in Red Wing    Six inducted … Canada’s legendary Steve Collins was our honored guest A crowd of over 100 enjoyed a dinner followed by the induction ceremony for the Class of 2017 into the American Ski Jumping Hall of Fame.  The first segment of the program was devoted to recognizing Steve Collins, the legendary Canadian teenager who electrified the sport in the early 1980s.  He was introduced as an honorary member of the ASJ HOF by Greg Windsperger, US Olympian and former US Jumping Team coach, and a short video called “Thunderbird” was shown, which ended with one of Steve’s dramatic flights in World Cup competition at age fifteen, in Lahti FIN.  The hill record was 114 meters; Steve flew 124; the second place jumper went 114.5.  He was the star of a strong Canadian team which was coached by a former US Olympian, Bill Bakke. Steve is a First Nation Canadian, and his grandfather Charlie Collins was a member of the Prairie Island community in the Red Wing area prior to moving to Canada; the Prairie Island community owns the golf course where this banquet was held, and the new 125 meter “Baldy” jump will be built on the east end of the golf course property.  It was an honor to have Steve present as this project is about to transition from planning to construction!  Following remarks by Steve, he introduced his chief, Peter Collins, who also spoke briefly.  VIDEOS:   Greg’s introduction of Steve           “Thunderbird”            Remarks by Steve and Peter                    For more info on the new jump, including link to a preview video, see  www.baldy125.com  American Ski Jumping President Bryan Sanders made some  remarks  about the history of the Red Wing and St Paul Ski Clubs, and about the new ski jump project, then introduced each of the five inductees who were either present in person, or who had family members there to accept their awards and make some personal remarks.  Read individual bios and view the presentation and acceptance via video links below.       Click names to view bio documents    YouTube video Reuben Hamari   posthumously view Chuck Heckert view Bobby Immens    posthumously view Randy Lunde view Tim Norris not present Wally Wakefield   posthumously view Congratulations to the ASJHOF Class of 2017!   New K125 Jump Near Red Wing MN - Update      Articles:  Mpls Star Tribune July 31     Rochester Post-Bulletin July 26   The Goodhue County Board of Commissioners unanimously paved the way for an Olympic-level ski-jumping facility to be built at Mount Frontenac just south of Red Wing.  The land, owned by the Prairie Island Indian Community, is currently home to Mount Frontenac Golf Course, and previously was home to the Mt Frontenac Ski Area.  read article  The final hill profile design was received from contributing FIS architect Hans Martin Renn in late April, with the K-point at 125 meters, hill size (HS)140 meters. The project will be developed in conjunction with the Prairie Island tribe, which owns the golf course and the nearby Treasure Island Casino.  Tribal officials attended the US large-hill National Championships in Park City in late July 2016, and are enthused about bringing this sport back to the site of its American roots.  Preview website: www.baldy125.com   click photo to enlarge site plan view Wally Wakefield Passes Away, Was a Founder of ASJ Wally Wakefield was one of the key people involved in the founding of Friends of American Ski Jumping, the parent organization of the American Ski Jumping Museum and Hall of Fame.  He passed away May 2, 2017, in St Paul.  He was a competitor back in the 1940s and 50s, and a tireless volunteer with the youth programs at the St Paul Ski Club throughout his life.  He was a member of the SPSC Hall of Fame.  In addition, he was a columnist and sportswriter in St Paul and the eastern suburbs for many years.  During the past ten years, he served as the chairman of the Selection Committee for the American Ski Jumping Hall of Fame.   Click photo at left for enlarged view. The Wakefield family held a "Celebration of Life" for Wally on Sunday May 14, 2017 at the American Legion in North St Paul, followed by a gathering at the St Paul Ski Club to place Wally’s ashes near Wakefield Hill, the 10 meter jump which is named after him.      Official Obituary (May 7, 2017)      View Wally’s SPSC HOF bio  FIS Officials Visit New Jump Site, Very Impressed FIS officials recently visited Mt. Frontenac Ski Jump site in Welch, MN - just south of Red Wing (6miles)  Friends of American Ski Jumping (FOASJ) is working with Prairie Island Indian Community (land owner and operator of Mt. Frontenac Golf Course) to build a new world class K120 hill.  Pictured L-R are: Dennis Egan - former mayor Red Wing, Ueli Forrer - FIS, Scott Smith - Board President, Bryan Sanders - CEO, Horst Tielmann - FIS, Billy Demong - 2010 Olympics Gold Medalist, Paul Ragozzino - Engineer, and David Solner - Architect.   click photo to enlarge
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Learning to Ski Jump in 1947 ... 20th Century Fox Movie Newsreel Footage!
This is what kids were doing back in the late 1940s if they lived near a ski jump and had big dreams of flying! This 20th Century Fox newsreel footage was filmed in Iron Mountain, Michigan, and one of the featured jumpers is 2009 ASJ HOF inductee Willie Erickson, at age 11 (he’s the one who identified the year for us!). Those old enough to remember newsreels at the movies will possibly recognize the voice of the narrator, Mel Allen, famed voice of the New York Yankees. The equipment has changed, the facilities look much different today, but ski jumpers start young, on small hills, just like they did back then.  Your webmaster, and many of the folks involved with the American Ski Jumping Hall of Fame, will remember scenes just like these.  Younger athletes will have different pictures in their heads, but they will all remember one thing they have in common ... experiencing the thrill of flight and always wanting more!
Welcome to American Ski Jumping … Past, Present, and Future
View online historic photo & autograph album from the Carl Darovich collection.  About 150 images!  CLICK THIS POST-IT
Lenny Johnson, Bill Mahre Uniform, Kip Sundgaard
We recently received this photo of Lenny Johnson (HOF ‘16) and Kip Sundgaard (HOF ‘08) with uniform worn by Bill Mahre (HOF ‘15), official starter at the Lake Placid Olympics, 1980.       Click to enlarge.