Barnebirkie race course changes announced

Posted By: The Ski Channel on January 20, 2010 11:02 am

HAYWARD, Wis., January 19, 2010 – The American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation is announcing changes to the Salomon/Swiss Miss Barnebirkie taking place on Thursday, February 25th.

“All children skiing the Barnebirkie will start behind the Hayward Primary School,” said Shellie Milford, Director of Race Operations. “We made the decision to move the Barnie race start to offer a better race course for skiers and spectators.”

The Barnebirkie is for skiers ages three to thirteen. The  youngest skiers participating in the one kilometer event will ski across school property until they connect with Main Street. They will then venture to the Barnie Finish Area located in front of Peoples Bank on Main Street.
Skiers completing the three and five kilometer events will ski from the Hayward Primary School to the Hayward Golf and Tennis Club property. They will then ski one or two laps, return to the Primary School and then on to the finish area.

“We believe these changes will offer all of the athletes a better event, “ explained Milford. “Athletes will enjoy a great course with rolling terrain and great scenery.”

“The new location also offers spectators better viewing opportunities,” said Milford. “Spectators can watch athletes at the start, see them along the golf course and then a short walk will get them to Main Street to see the finish.”

Barnebirkie bib pick-up and new registration takes place at the Hayward National Guard Armory starting at 8:30 a.m. and continuing until 11:30 a.m. The race registration fee for the Barnie is five dollars.
After their finish skiers will find tons of cookies and of course lots of Swiss Miss hot chocolate in the Birkie Celebration tent.

The Barnie Ski Games presented by Woodland Developments & Realty and Peoples Bank of Wisconsin will once again take place following the Barnebirkie. Children can enjoy various games and activities on their skis in the lot next to Peoples Bank.

Following the Barnebirkie the Elite Sprints presented by Johnson Bank will be held at 2:30 p.m. on Hayward’s Main Street. The sprints offer spectators the perfect opportunity to see the Elites up close as they compete head-to-head to be named the Elite Sprints Champion.

Milford invites everyone to come out and enjoy the Barnebirkie, Barnie Ski Games and Elite Sprints.

The 37th anniversary American Birkebeiner and Kortelopet events are expected to draw 7,500 skiers. Another 2,500 are anticipated for shorter races and events. 

About the Birkie:  Celebrating its 37th year, the American Birkebeiner (1-800-USA-BRKE;, February 25-27, 2010, is the largest and most prestigious cross country ski marathon in North America. Spanning more than 50 kilometers from Cable to Hayward, the Birkie is part of the Worldloppet series of 15 international races, and part of the lives of citizen skiers from around the world. Sponsors of Birkie include Subaru, Becker Law, Johnson Bank, Swiss Miss, Salomon, Hammer Energy, Sawyer County Record and other businesses throughout the region and country.