The Turkey Birkie Ski Festival is the perfect opportunity to glide on early snow, take a lesson, and simply enjoy a day on skis in the great north woods!

Turkey Birkie Ski Festival – Participant Guide!

Additionally, with the leading ski manufacturers in attendance giving you the first opportunity to try new gear, it is a great chance to kick off the XC ski season with a bang!

See friends, train hard, and have fun!


All Attending Must Register (even if you have an All-Access pass)

Cost: $25 or FREE if you have a Birkie Trail All-Access Ski pass.

Everyone attending will get a cool Turkey Birkie neck gaiter.  It will become your entry pass and help keep you warm!

Children 12 & under are free, but must still register.


The Turkey Birkie Ski Festival will take place at the American Birkebeiner Trailhead.  Arrive from Telemark Rd- take Hwy M east from Cable, take a right (south) on Telemark Rd. and follow the signs to parking and registration/check-in.  Exit the start/finish area on McNaught Rd.  There is ample parking at the American Birkebeiner Trailhead.

Schedule & Course

Schedule: Friday, November 26 through Sunday, November 28

Check-in Times and Derksen Family Great Hall Hours – EVERYONE must check-in

Friday: 8:00am – 4:00pm
Saturday: 8:00am – 4:00pm
Sunday: 8:00am – 1:00pm

Venue Schedule (when the trails are open for skiing!)

Friday: 8:00am – 7:00pm
Saturday: 8:00am – 7:00pm
Sunday: 8:00am – 5:00pm

*note: if you are planning to ski beyond the Great Hall hours listed above, you must remove any personal items from the Derksen Great Hall before closing time.

CXC Academy Ski Lessons – Schedule (see more information below)

Friday: 1:30pm – 3:00pm (skate)
Saturday: 9:00am – 10:30am (classic) | 1:30pm – 3:00pm (skate)
Sunday: 9:00am – 10:30am (classic)


Ski industry manufacturers will be on-site offering demos:
Friday: 12:00pm – 3:00pm
Saturday: 9:00am – 3:00pm
Sunday: 9:00am – 12:00pm

Course Information

  • You’ll be skiing the machine-made snow loops at the American Birkebeiner Trailhead.  Depending on Mother Nature, there could be many more kilometers to ski on!
  • Check the Birkie Trail Grooming & Trail Conditions report, or check the Birkie Trail Cams.


Ski Lessons

CXC Academy Ski Lessons

Learn from the CXC pro’s! From beginner to advanced lessons, CXC’s highly skilled instructors are excited to take your abilities to the next level. Whether you are a competitive Master’s racer, a first-time skier, or somewhere in between, come & enjoy the Birkie Start Trail, professional CXC Academy coaching, exceptional grooming and the best early-season snow in the Midwest.


  • Learn to Ski
  • Beginner: Know how to ski but want to improve your technique
  • Intermediate/Advanced Technique Lessons: Fine-tune your technique
  • Youth

Our Coaches

CXC has recruited some of the most experienced coaches and instructors in the area.  All are truly dedicated to seeing you achieve your personal best.

Our Facilities

With artificial snow in the making, phenomenal grooming, and trails for all ability levels, the American Birkebeiner Trailhead is an incredible classroom for your amazing cross-country experience.


CXC Academy is hosting and providing ski lessons for skiers of all ages and abilities.  Ski lessons are available in three categories: Learn to Ski, Beginner, and Intermediate/Advanced for $200 (Includes complimentary CXC Academy membership, CXC ski ties and buff; must still purchase $25 festival pass or All Access Trail pass).  For your convenience, you can register for lessons on the same form as you use for Turkey Birkie event registration, although CXC is providing the lessons (not the Birkie).  Register here.  Continue through registration to CXC ski lesson registration.

CXC Academy Ski Lessons Schedule

Registration for lessons includes ALL sessions listed below.

Friday: 1:30PM  – 3:00PM (skate)
Saturday: 9:00AM – 10:30AM (classic) |  1:30PM – 3:00PM (skate)
Sunday: 9:00AM – 10:30AM (classic)

New Lesson Opportunity!
Technique Progressions with Bryan Fish, US Ski Team

For Advanced Skiers Only
Cost: $300

1-2:15 PM Freestyle (no poles, V1)
2:30-4:15 PM Classic (no poles, diagonal stride)

8-9:15 AM Freestyle (V2, V2 Alt)
9:30-10:45 AM Classic (double pole, double pole kick)

Bryan Fish is in his 12th year with U.S. Ski & Snowboard. He is the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Cross Country Development Director and formerly the U.S. Ski Team Development Coach. Bryan began his coaching career in 1999 at his alma mater University of Wisconsin-Green Bay (UWGB). He coached part time for UWGB and was a full time engineer (Production Leader) for ENCAP, LLC. Bryan became the Central Cross Country (CXC) Elite Team Head Coach from 2006 to 2010.

In his role, Bryan oversees the overall sport- specific development pathway including junior development projects, domestic competition calendar, Cross Country Sport Education and domestic and development governance.

Bryan believes in the importance of empowering and educating American development athletes as well as providing them the infrastructure, opportunities, and support to allow them to pursue their athletic dreams. A primary pursuit of Bryan’s is to strengthen the USA Cross Country development system through fostering collaboration with member clubs, regions and key XC ski partners.

Bryan lives in Park City, UT and enjoys returning to his cabin in Northern Wisconsin where he grew up. He enjoys outdoor activities including mountain biking, trail running, kayaking and skiing.

Questions? Email

All proceeds from Ski Lessons are donated to the CXC Excellence Fund

CXC Excellence Fund covers 50% of the trip cost for the qualified athletes from the Central Region to the Junior and U23 World Championships, and National Nordic Foundation (NNF) supports the remaining 50%. In return, supported athletes offer their time to assist the CXC Regional Elite Camp, Dream Camp, and Igor Camps as athletes, coaches, and mentors for our next generation of athletes. Last winter CXC provided three $1,700 stipends to athletes who competed at the U23 World Championships in Lygna, Norway.

On-Site Demos

Thanks to the following vendors for their support of Turkey Birkie!

Friday12:00 pm-3:00 pm
Saturday9:00 am-3:00 pm
Sunday9:00 am-12:00 pm


North Woods GetawayTelemark Northwoods Lodging

The Turkey Birkie Ski Festival will take place at the American Birkebeiner Trailhead, located about 17 miles north of Hayward, WI, the “Gateway to the Historic Northwoods” in the town of Cable, WI. Within driving distance from Duluth, MN 1:30, Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN 3:00, Madison, WI 4:50, and Chicago, IL 7:20.

Lodging Options

For more information, please visit our lodging page to view the different lodging options that are around the area.


Gold Circle Elite
Gold Level Sponsors of the Major Birkie Events Year-Round

Earth Rider Brewery
Hayward Area Memorial Hospital
GU Energy Gel
New Moon Ski Shop
Kwik Trip

Be Part of the Birkie and the Markets We Serve!

Meredith Ingbretson
Partnership Coordinator
American Birkebeiner® Ski Foundation

Andrew Manocheo
Partnership Director
American Birkebeiner® Ski Foundation