Hayward, WI–November 3, 2014

Dear Birkie Friends –

Today begins a new chapter for the Birkie as we launch a campaign to ensure the future of the Birkie events, the iconic trail and everything the foundation works to do on a daily basis.

Over the past 12 months, in collaboration with the board of directors, I completed a 5-year strategic plan for the A.B.S.F. We have acknowledged the greatest risks to the foundation, as well as identified key opportunities that will create stability and increase our reach.

Recently, the opportunity has arisen to not only eliminate a large risk that for years has jeopardized our future, but to enhance the safety and experience for participants.   “Honor the Legacy, Ensure the Future” was born.

Working with the current ownership group at Telemark, we have been given the opportunity to purchase a section of land to build out a permanent start line at Telemark. Additionally, in cooperation with the DOT, County, City and other interest groups, we will be able to re-construct the “International Bridge” made famous by Tony Wise, this time in downtown Hayward, reducing traffic congestion, creating an improved flow for safety vehicles (and spectators), as well as providing access to services and infrastructure that improve safety and experience for all participants.

Race fees and other income streams allow us to operate world class events and maintain the amazing Birkie Trail, however, capital improvements with this scope we cannot do alone. These sizeable, yet essential projects will require generous support from our entire Birkie community. I’d like to ask for your support to help carry forward our important Birkie traditions, events, experiences and lore.

The Birkie is no longer just a race that happens one day a year – it has evolved into a community, a year-round lifestyle, and an ideology of healthy living – and the lifeblood, the thread that holds it together is the great Birkie race itself.  Success with our first ever capital fundraising campaign will ensure our future and make the race experiences even better.

Complete details of the campaign and how to contribute can be found at www.birkie.com/future.

Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me if you have any questions – I’m happy to answer and inform.

See you out on the trail – Let it snow!





Ben Popp
Executive Director, A.B.S.F.

American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation | 10527 Main St, Hayward, Wi 54843 |     715.634.5025 | birkie@birkie.com


Posted November 3, 2014 at 11:55 am