May 22, 2009

Ski to Sea Race - May 24

It's Memorial Day weekend and what that means here in Bellingham is the annual Ski to Sea Race from Mt. Baker to Bellingham Bay.  The race is a relay starting on Mt. Baker with a cross-country skier handing off a baton to downhill skier who hands off to a runner who hands off to a bike rider who hands off to a canoer who hands off to a mountain bike rider who hands off to a kayaker who finishes the race in Fairhaven.

Ski to SeaThe race is often traced back to the Mt. Baker Marathon held from 1911 to 1913. The marathon was a  foot race to the top of Mt. Baker conceived by the Mt. Baker Club as a publicity stunt aimed at focusing the government's attention on the region to have the North Cascades area designated as part of the National Park System

To present Ski to Sea Race began in 1973.  Now a relay race, it was designed to showcase the recreational opportunities available in Whatcom County. The Race has evolved into the annual event it is today, attracting participants from all over the world.  It has been featured on national television several times.

Aside for the race Ski to Sea weekend has also evolved to include a grand parade, a junior race, a junior parade, a golf tournament, and a tremendous party and festival where it "all ends in Fairhaven" on race day.  If you happen to be anywhere near Bellingham come on down to Fairhaven enjoy the party atmosphere, the art, the food, the music, and watch the racers cross the finish line.

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