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Friends ✅ Memories ✅ Cowbell ✅

Friends √ Memories √ Cowbell √

Thanks to the herculean efforts of so many marvelous volunteers, last weekend was a truly memorable 2021 Iceman. Our Liderato members and volunteers stepped up to help make the weekend a true celebration of bikes, community, and connections.

It all began at the Iceman Expo, where we introduced Norte to a few thousand riders and connected with countless old friends. Thank you, Iceman Cometh and National Cherry Festival, for inviting us.

Saturday started at the Timber Ridge to cheer on the many first-time racers sporting Norte jerseys in the Slush Cup. It sounded like every minute a Norte racer was crossing the finish line. Big thank you to up.bike for hauling our Norte gear the day before with their Adventure Hub.

As the Slush Cup ended, racers tearing up the full Iceman started to roll in, including our own Wes Sovis and Lauren Dake — great job, Team Orange. Also crossing that finish line was Asher Schwartz and Paxton Robinson, both 8-years-old and the youngest riders ever to go the distance in the point-to-point race. Congratulations, Asher and Paxton!

We wrapped up Saturday helping cheer on nearly 400 Sno-Cone racers. Thank you, volunteers, for keeping the race running smoothly, handing out medals, and ringing those cowbells for the young ones. Undoubtedly, memories and family traditions have begun.

Norte followed all of that up with a full force Sunday cleanup crew at Timber Ridge (thanks, Liderato) before heading over to the Vasa Trailhead for a ride with some pros. Norte Rides with the Pros was the first of its kind. Norte riders, a crew from the West Michigan Coyotes, and their adults rode with 2021 Iceman winner Cole Paton and U-23 National Champion Savilia Blunk. We learned some skills, quizzed Cole and Savilia, and generally enjoyed a miraculously pleasant 60 degree November day on mountain bikes. Thank you to Cole and Savilia’s sponsor, Orange Seal for spending the day with Norte.

A big thank you to Janna Goethel and Brian Beauchamp from TART Trails for helping to promote and organize the ride, and to Tim Jenema from Northern Michigan Mountain Bike Association, who spoke about NMMBA’s work transforming the VASA Bike Park. And, another huge thank you goes out to Mike Erway Design, title sponsor of the Ride With the Pros — donuts always go over well!

Whew — who’s ready for Iceman 2022? 

 


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