Ski Tournament News

Lately I’ve been searching old newspaper archives and I’ve found documentation for Borreson involvement in ski jump tournaments from 1926 to 1947. Let’s start with this newspaper photo – which doesn’t reproduce well but at least gives an impression.

The February 15, 1967 edition of the Winona Daily News features this “1934 Ski Tournament” photo of an event sponsored by the Sugar Loaf Ski Club in Winona, Minnesota. The winner was Herbert Honsey of Winona, and among the many participants were Red [Ednar] Borreson, Pigeon Falls (second from right, second row) and Odell Borreson, Pigeon Falls (second from right, front row sitting).

La Crosse Tribune and Leader-Press, Feb. 21, 1926. In ski meet at Blair, Wisconsin, Pigeon Falls skiers took the top three places, Bennie Borreson coming in third – plus placing second in the long standing jump.

La Crosse Tribune and Leader-Press, Wed., March 16, 1932. On Sunday, March 13, the Whitehall Ski and Soccer Club sponsored a ski tournament with clubs from Tamarack, Strum, Pigeon Falls, and Whitehall represented, and with 200 people attending. Competing in Class A, “Bennie Borreson…of Pigeon Falls made both his runs at 108 feet and scored 14.22 and [in] the long standing event he had his third jump at 103 feet to win the contest.” (Others jumped further but fell.)

Sheboygan Press, January 7, 1935. At the Whitehall ski tournament the day prior, 81 jumpers had participated, watched by 4,000 spectators. Look at those numbers! The winning jumper was a Chicagoan.

La Crosse Tribune and Leader-Press, January 6, 1936. At this Whitehall ski tournament, the skiers included Bennie Borreson, Whitehall, and Melvin Johnsom, Strum (whom I met in Havre, MT in 1969). Skiers also came from Ishpeming, MI; St. Paul, Red Wing, and Cloquet, MN; and Eau Claire, Hudson, Wausau, Chippewa Falls, and Racine, WI. [All these came to Whitehall!]

Recently I came across the photo below, saved by my parents, which leads me to conclude that it features a family member at a local tournament. The date stamped on the back is March 4, 1938. Note that the jump itself seems to be wood frame construction.

La Crosse Tribune and Leader-Press, Sunday, March 2, 1941. The Trempealeau County ski champion will be determined at a ski meet in Galesville Sunday, March 2. With many award winners participating, “competition will be keen.” Twenty-seven persons anticipated (plus many others) were listed, among them Bennie and Odell Borreson.

La Crosse Tribune, Tuesday, February 25, 1947. On Sunday, February 23, the Town Ski Club of Pigeon Falls held on open tournament on Eid Hill at which Bennie Borreson won second in the Senior Class.

Over a span of 22 years, that’s three Borreson brothers – Bennie, Red [Ednar], Odell – and five ski hills in two states, and we know from previous posts that Gilbert and Sidney also competed in ski jump tournaments. I expect that this documentation is but the “tip of the snowbank.”

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