Northwoods Adventure: Finlandia Skiers Cross Finish Line at 39th Annual Races
Buena Vista Ski Area near Bemidji hosted the 39th annual Finlandia Ski Marathon on Saturday, February 20. With 124 competitors spread out among five different races, the marathon saw almost every competitor finish.
Starting in 1978 at the Bemidji waterfront, a group of skiers took two days to travel from the Paul and Babe statue to Buena Vista Ski Area and back to the BSU stadium. Now, more than 40 years later, the marathon has grown to include more than 100 ski enthusiasts. They join in the single day race and take part in a historic event whose connections reach back to the Finnish consulate.
Recognized nationwide, the Finlandia Ski Marathon holds the title of “Best Course” and “Best Overall Event” by skier of the Minnesota Skinnyski Series. Falling between two other major ski marathons in the Midwest, Minnesota Finlandia often draws in a large crowd, sometimes with international fame.
Weather-related issues and the pandemic caused cancellations in the past. However, thanks to a well-planned schedule and tenacious participants that kept the finish line in sight, the 39th Minnesota Finlandia came to a close.
No award ceremony took place due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Top male and female racers did receive recognition and a handmade wooden axe decoration.
More information about the Finlandia Ski Marathon can be found on their website.
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