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Hello to my MSFL family and those considering joining our life-changing organization.

My Father Jim Ellickson, who was one of the founding members of this great organization, included his kids in everything he did. This allowed my sister Kim and I to literally be raised within our MSFL community. Having started with this group more than four decades ago, it was one of the greatest honors of my life to be selected as the new President of Michigan Ski for Light. When I look at some of the incredible leaders this organization has had and the impact they have left on not only MSFL, but my personal life as well, I am humbled to have this opportunity to continue serving.

I certainly never expected one of my first acts as President to be the cancellation of our January 2021 event, but that is exactly what I am faced with doing today. The Executive Board reviewed our safety options and our financial obligations. The more we tried to look at ways of modifying our event to conform to the social distancing and safety protocols the more we realized it just would not work for our group.

We also asked the Executive Board to research the financial obligations we would have to meet if we tried to delay this decision. Unfortunately, we quickly realized these financial risks would be well beyond the means of our group to absorb.

I'd like to thank the board members, especially our Treasurer John Peiffer, for the work they put in to find all the facts and allow us to make an objective decision.

In true MSFL fashion, the story does not end here. In a typical year, we all invest a long weekend in this group. Even accounting for sleep (and who gets much of that when we are having that much fun) we all spend around 36 hours skiing, dancing, playing cards, sharing talents and catching up with life long friends.

I would like to challenge all of us to do the same this year, just not at the RAM Center. To support this goal and improve our organization at the same time, we are going to undertake a few actions at the Board and Committee levels to come up with opportunities to make our return in 2022 the best event we have ever held.

I will be working with a sub-committee to review the organization of our committees and their duties. We will then ask each of the Committee Chairs to compile a list of their duties and their current committee members. We plan to post all of these to our website so everyone can see what it takes to make this organization run and more importantly, where people can contribute their talents to help accomplish these commitments.

We want this organization to continue running in a fully transparent fashion and empower all of us to take ownership in this group we love so much.

As we work to prepare this information, I'd like to challenge everyone to start "participating" in your MSFL family now. Call some of your friends just to catch up, write a story about past experiences or keep a journal about this year's alternative activities. Most importantly, make sure to get outside and enjoy the outdoors.

Until we can slip and slide again,

Ted Ellickson
President Michigan Ski for Light

The Michigan Department of Resources publicized Michigan Ski For Light in a big way this year! Diane Paize Engle from the Michigan History Center wrote a wonderful article about 2020's MSFL Annual Event and had it published in the DNR's newsletter: Showcasing the DNR.

Complete with quotes from old-timers and newbies alike, you'll re-live that experience all over again when reading it.

Here is the complete article as a PDF. Enjoy!

7/14/14

Hello all,

I enjoyed speaking with the heads of all nine US regional SFL organizations recently and I learned quite a bit. Many of us share the same concerns of aging memberships. Most of us are continually looking for new ways to attract skiers and guides and to raise more funds to support our events. Several of you suggested having a conference call to brainstorm recruitment and fundraising ideas. We might arrange such a call in September or early October. I will keep you posted.

The deadline for the next edition of the Ski for Light Bulletin is about 10 days away. If you have not done so already, please send me information on your upcoming events for this fall and winter. Send the information to civiak@gmail.com. Please do not respond directly to this e-mail, unless you want it to go to the entire listserve.

Regards,
Bob Civiak
Regional Liaison, SFL Inc.
civiak@gmail.com.

Michigan skier's dominate the Ski For Light event held at Shanty Creek Resort, MI

1st Place Marie Pacini - Totally Blind Women under 56 years of age

2nd Place Nino Pacini - Totally Blind Men under 56 years of age

2nd Place Lynda Boose - Totally Blind Women 57 years of age or older.

3rd Place Sean Oden - Partially Sighted Men

Guide Gary Earnley helped his skier from Australia take a 3rd Place finish in the Totally Blind Men 57 years of age or older. The VIP that Gary Earnley had, attended SFL for several years and this was the first time he has ever placed in the top 3.

CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL MSFL SKIIERS AND GUIDES!

3/14/14

Michigan SFLers!!!

Ski For Light International week was as fine as always this year! Although Mother Nature flexed her muscles during the arrival process and delayed many people, eventually we all made it to Anchorage.

Temperatures started at about 10 degrees and gradually rose through out the week to a high of 49 (and sunny). Unfortunately, this FINE final temperature melted the race course so NO races this year. But, also no injuries either and this is a good thing!

Since the first place prizes always have the date and location on them, each race division had a random drawing and Geri and Marie won! SO, Michigan is so good that we ended up with to first place prizes even though there was no race. How cool is that?

Other highlights from the week were that we attended the ceremonial start of the Iditarod, a horse drawn hey/slay ride, silent auction (got out bid AGAIN), and several dances.

All week was festive in Anchorage as it was something they called Furendezvous (pronounced fur Rendezvous) which hosted all types of fun events. Just a few were The Outhouse Race where teams of people race carrying an outhouse; a carnival (complete with rides); a Running-of-the-reindeer race (patterned after the Running-of-the-bulls in Spain (yes people were chased by reindeer)) and numerous dog sled races. A CRAZY week for sure!!!

As I usually do at such events, I managed to pack on a couple LBs even though I skied my heart out. O'well!! One of the nicest things I did was to ski from the resort area back to the hotel. The Tony Knowles Coastal Trail is one of the most beautiful coastal trails in the
nation (according to them). The trail gently winds along the coast eleven miles from downtown all the way to the area where we skied. Along with the peace and solitude we found on this trail, it's really cool for V.I. people (and others too). In downtown Anchorage they have a scale representation of the sun (about the size of a nice 4 person tent). About 2 blocks away is a representation of Mercury (the planet) and it's about the size of a small pea (in scale to the sun of course). Supposedly, the time it takes a person to walk from place to place is the same amount of time it takes light to travel between those two points in our solar system. A couple blocks further on is Venus and it's the size of an average pea. The planets continue along the coastal trail with Pluto being just outside the ski lodge. It took me about 2 hours to ski the 17K/11 mile trail and I was skiing faster than a person would walk. It was quite the eye-opener (pun intended). If you ever make it to Anchorage, check it out!!!

Did you know that Alaska is the size of California, Texas and Montana combined? I didn't!

Check out the following link for some real-time video.

http://www.ktuu.com/news/news/ski-for-light/24775018

Next year SFL International week starts on Sunday January 25th in Granby Colorado. Mark your calendars and start saving your pennies!!!

Hope to see you all there!

NP

April 21, 2013, the Ann Arbor Skyline swim program will be hosting the Sky-Tri Sprint and Mini- Sprint Triathlon at Skyline High School in Ann Arbor. This event will be a fundraiser for the Skyline High School swim program.

We are very excited that we were just approved as a "Paratriathlete Friendly" course. This is very exciting for us. Paratriathlon is a fast growing sport and will debut at the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio.

To make this event a success, they are asking for help and support of community members. They are hoping that you will be able to help with our visuallly impaired athletes as well as with any other paratriathletes who may have some knowledge or expertise.

Here are the details of the event:

Date: Sunday, April 21, 2013
Start Time: 8:00 am
Where: Ann Arbor Skyline High School 2552 North Maple Road, Ann Arbor, MI
Race Capacity: 500

SPRINT: 400 YARD SWIM 12.4 MILE BIKE 3 MILE RUN
MINI-SPRINT: 200 YARD SWIM 6.2 MILE BIKE 1.5 MILE RUN
RELAY: Teams of 3, sprint division only

A fundraiser for the Skyline swim program, Sky-Tri is a great early season tri with a pool swim! Perfect for first timers or for those who want to get an early start on the 2013 race season. A mostly flat bike course along scenic Huron River Dr. and a flat and fast run course around school grounds and through Ann Arbor neighborhoods.

For information about this event and registration, please visit our website info page at: www.epicraces.com/?event=sky-tri

More information about Epic races and our other events can be found at www.epicraces.com

SFL International is Coming To Town.

Ever want to go to the International version of our ski event, but cost got in the way? Well, this year consider going since it's being held in our "back yard"!!!

The 2013 Ski For Light International event is being held at Shanty Creek Resorts (just outside Bellaire) this year. This means that you can attend and save yourself the entire cost of air travel (that's probably about $500). Once you get to the event and mingle with all the other wonderful people who attend, you'll be happy you made the effort.

Cost is only $850 for the ENTIRE week and it covers meals, lodging, transportation, trail passes and much much more.

For more information and to apply please visit the SFL.ORG home page and follow the links. The first five links should answer all the possible questions you might have.

I hope to see you all there!!!

Nino Pacini