The ConocoPhillips Interior Youth Festival will be held at Birch Hill Recreation Area Saturday, March 18. All elementary and junior high skiers are welcome to join in the festivities.

This fun day-long event is all about young skiers. Other ski races, such as the Kinross Fort Knox Town Race Series and ConocoPhillips Besh Cups, feature older skiers, who often get the spotlight. During the ConocoPhillips Interior Youth Festival the younger skiers are the main attraction. The shorter distances are geared for youth and allow the skiers to try multiple formats in a single day. The three races include an interval start classic technique race, a 100-meter classic sprint, and a freestyle ski-cross. New this year, is an open class, available for high school or older skiers who want a chance to enjoy skiing in a fun-filled atmosphere.

The emphasis of this event is on fun competition during one of our long, sunny mid-March days. To keep with the kid-centered theme, the Awards Ceremony features prizes, awards and a pizza feast. People from across Interior Alaska and even other parts of the state come to participate. Last year, about 60 young skiers participated.

Events are as follows, and skiers are welcome to sign-up for one, two or all three events during the ConocoPhillips Interior Youth Festival.  

  • 10 AM - Interval Start Classic Technique.  1 km for K-2nd grade, 2 km for 3rd/4th and 5th/6th grade, and 3 km for 7th/8th grade and Open class.
  • 12:30 - 120 meter Classic Sprint.  Heats and Finals.
  • 3 PM - Freestyle Ski-Cross.  A mostly downhill turny, twisty race with bumps, jumps, and obstacles.
  • 4 PM - Pizza party and prize ceremony.  Pizza and prizes for all participants, plus awards for top skiers.  Must be present to win.

Early entry deadline is 5 PM on Thursday March 16.  Early Entry fees are $5 for 1 race or $10 for 2 or 3 races.  Early entries can be turned in to Beaver Sports, Goldstream Sports, Raven Cross Country or Trax Outdoor Center.  Day of race entries are available from 8 to 9:30 AM on Saturday, March 18, and are $10 for one race or $20 for 2 or 3 races.  An entry form can be downloaded here.  

For questions please contact Pete Leonard (pete [at] peteleonard.net).