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Here it comes

Did you see the termination dust? It won't be long until we get to clip into our skis and slide down the trails! Membership, besides providing a big chunk of the funds we depend on to groom trails and operate in general, shows your support for the club and it's mission to get people together, skiing. Our membership season runs from September 1 - August 31, you can renew on our website. A few lucky souls were able to renew at our booth at Friday Fling and we even had several new member signups. We are excited for a fun and hopefully very snowy season. We have a wide variety of outdoor activities planned throughout the winter, so stay tuned to this newsletter and our social media pages for more information. We hope you had a wonderful summer and we look forward to seeing you on the trails this fall and winter!

We have the dates pinned down for our Nordic race and event season. Go to our website and you can scroll through the calendar on the home page and find information about our events.
Dates to remember include:
November 13 for the Race to the Outhouse #1,
November 26 for Turkey Trax,
December 30 and 31 for the Icicle Double,
January 9 for the start of the Northern Lights Race Series,
and March 13 for the Mat-Su Ski for Women.
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Membership

Memberships for the 2021-22 season will be available on the club's website on September 1st. All memberships need to renewed, there is no auto-renew from last year. You may notice that we increased membership rates for this season. It has been some years since the last membership fee increase. We've been grooming earlier and later into the season for several years in a row, we have more equipment to insure and maintain, and we are grooming all winter long at Independence since the State stopped mid-winter grooming there. One day we'd like to start compensating our groomers (just like our Junior Nordics coaches, they are 100% volunteer!). If you have any questions or concerns about the increase in prices, please let us know and we will be happy to work with you on your membership. New this year is a membership sticker! When you renew we will make sure you get a new season sticker to put alongside your Mat-Su Borough and State of Alaska parking passes.

Annual Meeting of the Club

The Annual Meeting (and social) will be on October 16th this year. It will be at GPRA. We are closely monitoring the ongoing pandemic and are planning on a mostly outdoor event, complete with a silent auction, live music, food, socializing, and more! If an annual meeting sounds boring to you, have no fear, we promise to mix in some fun with the stuff (club finances and accomplishments) that we just gotta tell you! The annual meeting is also your opportunity to tell us how the club is doing, elect new board members (1 empty seat to fill, and 3 to reelect or replace), and ask questions about anything you've been wondering about. We encourage all members to attend as this is a great opportunity for us to hear your voice! Stay tuned for more information.

Club Administrator

Give a welcome to Marla Jakab. She has been our new Administrator for several months now. She is an ex-Junior Nordics mom and an avid skier. It is hard to imagine the Club functioning without a capable administrator, so we are very glad to have her on board.
Our thanks to Allison Fry, our previous administrator, for her excellent work. We are lucky that she is helping Marla get up to speed; and will be staying in the club community as a key organizer of the Junior Nordics program.

Give all year

You can help support the Mat-Su Ski Club through the Fred Meyer Community Awards program and through Amazon Smile. Every little bit counts.

Adult Ski Lessons

We will be providing adult ski lessons again this coming winter. And, for the first time, we will have some rental ski sets available for students. Stand by for more news.

GPRA parking fines

The Mat-Su Borough is now enforcing the parking rules at GPRA and other Borough park sites. If you do not display a current Borough parking sticker or a day pass - you will get a $60 ticket, enforced by the Third District Court of Alaska. The Borough is checking the parking lot several times every day. The parking fees go into a Borough fund for recreational facilities.

Junior Nordics news and info

Junior Nordics registration begins on September 8th this year. Registration is limited to returning Junior Nordics families for the first week. On September 15th registration opens to all. This program fills up FAST so please register sooner rather than later. You'll notice an increase in Junior Nordics fees this year, decided upon by the board. One reason for the increase is too support grooming, upon which Junior Nordics is dependent. We are also hoping to be able to compensate our head coaches and coaches this year (did you know that they've always been 100% volunteer?!) Even with the price increase, it's less than$10 week for two sessions. We understand that this may be a large enough increase to make the program unaffordable to some families, if that family is you or friends of yours, please let us know, we do have some scholarships available. Another new option this year is you now have the ability to sponsor a Junior Nordics skier! If your kids have grown out of the program, or you just believe in the power of skiing, you have the option to sponsor a kiddo for $75. We want to have as many kids on skis as possible, please help us help kiddos in need.

Bridges for sale

If you would like show your business's support for the Nordic ski community - several of the Nordic bridges at GPRA do not yet have sponsors. Write to info@matsuski.org for more info.

Trail work with machinery

Our long-time volunteer equipment operator spent several days rounding some over-sharp corners and widening some bottlenecks on the Matanuska, Susitna, and Pioneer Loops. These improvements will be appreciated by those trying to stay in the classic tracks while speeding around the corners, and will make it easier to groom. Improvements of the Nordic Terrain Park were also completed, and spruce trees were strategically planted around the Pioneer Loop for future winter decorations.

Big thanks to steady donor Alaska Pacific Rental for donating the mini-x rental for this work.
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Thanks for the Volunteer Support!

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Thanks to all the folks that came out for the Thursday Trail Evenings in August. They made sure that projects all over the trail system are finished and ready for winter. The crews did the finishing work on the many machine-cut trail modifications. They continued the Sisyphean tasks of cutting back brush and tossing rocks. The Terrain Park took a bit of work to smooth and rock toss after the machine work. There was some attending to eroded trail areas also, but that gets less and less each year as the trails mature and grass in.

The PistenBully is riding on fresh track belts now, which will last many years. Huge thanks to the volunteer wrench-twisters! There are maintenance needs on our equipment that require professional attention, but this one could be done with volunteers, and they saved the club a lot of money. Changing a track belt is sort of like replacing a wheel with 1000 lug nuts. The crew replaced six worn belts!
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Borough parking passes

Remember - 8 hours of volunteer trail work recorded by the Mat-Su Ski Club or Valley Mountain Bikers and Hikers (VMBaH) earns one a Mat-Su Borough parking pass for the following year, custom delivered to your snailmail address. All you have to do is record your name and mailing address and hours on the appropriate Club's paperwork. Watch for emails and for postings on matsuski.org about volunteer opportunities.

New Donors in August

Donors
Thanks to Sarah Wright for her generous donation.

Donate here

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