We’ve had another great season of events at Maplelag, kicking off with our annual Laddies Loppet mountain bike races in early September, which drew hundreds of riders, families and friends to enjoy a great fall weekend and the Maplelag hospitality. The event brings a lot of new friends to Maplelag and a chance to explore our trail system and dip in the lake, all without the usual cover of winter.
Once the snow started flying, nearly 2500 high school kids from 25 schools participated in ski clinics in, time trials and ski technique. Maplelag was a major sponsor of the ski camps which allowed the teams that may not otherwise have the opportunity to train in a stress-free environment in a resort atmosphere. Maplelag will continue to promote and support healthy active lifestyles in the beauty of nature while trying to leave as little of an imprint on the environment as possible.
It is with fond memories and some sense of loss that we announce the end of the Lotvola Cup. The timing of the event, as well as some issues with land access, have led us to the difficult decision to no longer continue this race. The Lotvola Cup was one of the oldest cross country ski races in Minnesota, started back in 1978, and has grown to be popular among not only local skiers but enthusiasts from around the country.
The 12 KM classic technique only race was named in honor of Elias Lotvola, an early Finnish pioneer in the local Sugarbush who was famous for his skiing abilities and for making of the classic wooden skis in the Finnish tradition by hand. Even when he was in 80’s Elias would ski thru the bush and woods checking his trapline of over 30 miles in length. His skis and poles were on display in the lodge, but sadly they were lost in the total destruction of the lodge in the fire of December of 1999. However, many examples of homemade Finnish wooden skis in the lodge which are most similar to those made by Elias Lotvola, are on display in the new lodge. The race honored the tradition of Nordic skiing in Minnesota and up to the most recent race, had a wood ski division. Past Lotvola Cup participants included not only recreational skiers but Olympic athletes including biathelte Wynn Roberts of Battle Lake area who competed in Vancover in 2010. Maplelag has always promoted a healthy and environmental friendly use of the land with a minimal footprint so as to conserve and promote our wonderful natural resources.
We will continue to offer a number of great special events at Maplelag, and hope to see all of you