Salisbury Jumpfest and Eastern U.S. Ski Jumping Championships Feb. 8 -10

Despite last week’s rain and 50 degree temperatures, there will be no shortage of snow at Satre Hill this weekend when the Salisbury Winter Sports Association (SWSA) hosts ski jumping for the 87th year during Jumpfest Weekend in Salisbury, CT, drawing some of the best junior jumpers in the East- many with Olympic aspirations.

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SWSA president Ken Barker said “The night time temperatures dropped right after the warm spell and we’ve been making snow ever since.” Barker added “We have two snow guns that produce huge volumes of snow.”

With overnight temperatures remaining low this week SWSA directors will continue snowmaking to add extra cover to the landing hill.

photo credit Jonathan Doster
photo credit Jonathan Doster

“Our biggest problem,” Barker said “is that because there isn’t much snow on the ground out there, people may think that we don’t have any either. Right now, our ski jump facility looks like a big white patch in a otherwise brown world.”

The three-day Jumpfest will include Target-Jumping Under the Lights as well as the Human Dogsled Race, a crowd favorite where five humans pull one human on a sled around a .3 mile course. Teams get very creative with both their costumes and sleds.

photo credit: Jonathan Doster
photo credit: Jonathan Doster

Junior jumpers, many of whom have recently completed in the junior jump camp, will show off their new-found skills as they compete on the 20 and 30 meter hills.

Ice carving will return to the Scoville Memorial Library again this year, but with a new twist. In place of an actual competition, the event will feature multiple-block demonstration pieces by some the areas (and country’s) best carvers that will be sure to impress. To add to the fun, the areas best restaurants will compete in a chili cook-off. At night, Snow Ball revelers can dance to the rock and roll music of Common Folk and Treetop Blues featuring Joe Bouchard of Blue Oyster Cult fame.

Schedule of Events

Friday
Nite Lites

6:30 pm- Chili Cook-off
7 pm- Target-Jumping under the lights.
Following jumping- Human Dogsled Race

Saturday

9 am- Nordic Kids 20 and 30 meter competition
11am-noon- practice for Salisbury Invitational ski jumping competition
1pm-3pm- Salisbury Invitational Competition
11am-3pm- Ice Carving Demonstration featuring area’s best carvers, Scoville Memorial Library, free admission
8pm-midnight- Snow Ball, featuring opening band The Common Folk and treetop Blues with Joe Bouchard of Blue Oyster Cult fame, at the Lakeville Hose Co., admission: Adults $12, children 12 and under free.

Sunday

Pancake Breakfast at Salisbury Volunteer Ambulance building
11am- Practice 87th Annual Eastern Ski Jumping Championships
1pm- Competition including Junior Olympic hopefuls.

All jumping events held at Satre Hill in Salisbury.
Unless otherwise noted, admission for all events: $10 for adults and children 12 and under are free.

Proceeds from Jumpfest Weekend will fund SWSA’s children’s skiing programs.

For updates and program changes go to www.Jumpfest.org. For area information www.litchfieldhills.com

Winter Carnival Hi-Jinks in Salisbury CT Jan. 28 and 29

Salisbury CT Ski Fest!

A new Winter Carnival Weekend January 28th and 29th will be a festive prelude to the annual Jumpfest Ski Jumping Championships in Salisbury, the town in Connecticut’s Litchfield Hills that has been a mecca for ski jumping for nearly a century.

The Carnival Weekend highlight will be a wacky Gelande Jumping Exhibition, from 5 pm – 7 pm on Jan. 28th and from 11 am – 2 pm on Sun., Jan. 29. This event, also known as “Alpine Skiing” is where skiers burdened with downhill equipment try to emulate the ski jumpers who will soon be showing for real what it takes to excel at this challenging sport.

Another new event debuting during Winter Carnival will be the Human Dogsled Race that will feature five people pulling a sixth on a sled over a .5 k course. The race will be held around 2 pm on Sunday after the Gelande Jumping event ends. In addition, activities for youngsters such as ice carving and the Children’s Ski Jumping Meet from 1pm – 3 pm have been planned.

Admission to all events is $10 for adults, children 12 years old and under free. For happy viewing, the Association recommends that spectators dress warmly in lots of layers. Satre Hill is on Indian Cave Road, off Route 44 in Salisbury. Signs in the center of Salisbury point the way to ample free parking. For up to the minute information, please visit: http://www.jumpfest.org. For dining and lodging information visit www.litchfieldhills.com.

About SWSA
A Salisbury Connecticut tradition for 80 years, this all-volunteer organization has fostered the exhilarating sport of ski jumping among all ages and generations. SWSA continues to improve its snowmaking capabilities, ensuring that the Eastern National Ski Jumping Championships will remain an annual event in Salisbury, CT.