With ski season over, and everyone looking forward to warmer weather, I'd like to take this opportunity to thank the people that work tirelessly behind the scenes to help make the Williams Nordic team what it is. Whether it's tossing feeds to zooming skiers, planning and organizing the elaborate and delicious food table, taking pictures and video of every race, or screaming at our skiers on the race course, our athlete's parents, simply put, are the best parents.
I know not every parent can make it to the Carnival races, but even those that have other obligations, or live on the total opposite side of the country, seem to find ways to help contribute to the Williams Nordic family, and we thank you! That being said, I'm always astounded when our athlete's parents from the West and Mid-west show up to a weekend of racing, sometimes on short notice, or as a surprise to their child mid-race.
There are a select few parents that can't be thanked enough, as they've gone above and beyond what's expected, and as their children will be graduating this Spring, they'll be sorely missed next season.
First, Emily and Peter Benson: Emily did an amazing job organizing the food table this past winter, complete with a spreadsheet food sign-up, and race info for all the parents. On top of that, Emily was also active in the feed zone on mass start day, and more than willing to help out with any other tasks. Like Emily, Peter was also always willing to help, and was the handyman of all handymen. If we needed gas for the generator, Peter drove to the gas station to get it. If we needed someone to carry spare poles onto the course, or brush out race skis before the start, Peter was our guy. If we needed someone to videotape every Williams skier at every race for the past four years, Peter would just ask where on the course he should video.
Cathy Schen and Peter Hoenig: Cathy and Peter have been at every single Carnival race for the past seven years. Peter has taken pictures of every single Williams skier at every race, and is the reason why we have such great action shots for the Williams media and Athletics website, as well as photos for our race report blogposts and Instagram/Facebook page. Cathy was highly active with the food table organization, set-up, and food supply. She could often be seen in the feed zone during mass start races, and was more than helpful with any random tasks or duties we needed.
Tom and Liz Costley: Tom and Liz have been awesome contributors to the food table, including some delicious chilis and soups. You could always see them zipping around the race course cheering on all of our athletes, and are some of the smiliest and cheerful people at every venue. If the coaches ever needed a coffee, Tom or Liz would be there asking if we wanted cream and sugar before our mugs were even empty. They were also greatly helpful and hospitable when we decided to stay in Williamstown for our Thanksgiving camp, and hosted the team for Thanksgiving dinner.
Michelle Fields: Though pulling double duty, as Michelle also has a son on Colby's team, she remained loyal to the Williams' food table, and was very helpful when it came to organizing the food and supplies, setting up and breaking down the food table, making sure the soups and chilis stayed hot, and suppling some delicious food for us to enjoy.
Diane and Andreas Halvorsen: Diane and Andreas have contributed so much to the Williams ski team, as Andreas was a member when he was in school here, and now all three of their kids have come through the Nordic program (Heidi will be a senior next year). The team always loves having dinner at their house in Stowe during the UVM Carnival, and Diane always contributes some amazing foods to the food table.
Tawny Nicolaysen: It was an unexpected and pleasant surprise when Jason and I arrived back to our waxing trailer in Steamboat last year at NCAA's to find a bag of goodies courteous of Tsaina's mom. It was also great to see Tawny this year at the Middlebury Carnival, to see he daughter's last couple of races of her collegiate career, and to enjoy some smoked salmon and reindeer sausage from Alaska.
Linda and Matthew Cole: Linda and Matthew were at almost every race, and were huge contributors to the food table. They were there at Regionals this past winter to see Hannah's last races of her collegiate career, and Linda was always willing to drive to Williamstown at 4am so that Hannah could hop in the van to Mont Sainte Anne every year.
|The feed zone: Cathy Schen (Blue hat) on the far left, and Emily Benson (Green jacket) on the far right, offering feeds to Tsaina followed by Ingrid.|
|Coach Jason and a few of the boys enjoying the Parent's amazing food table.|
|SO many helping hands and hungry skiers!|
|Linda Cole, Emily Benson, Peter Benson, and Luis Bango.|
|Nick and his dad Jamie Gardner: Always great to see our Minnesota contingent venture out East for a few races!|
|Cathy Schen and Emily Benson brace the winter storm at Colby last year while also counting laps for our skiers!|
|Emily Benson, Cathy Schen, and Paul Becker in the feed zone at a frigid Dartmouth Carnival last winter!|
|John Harrington and Troy Schrupp manning the food table at Middlebury last year!|
|David Dethier wears many hats in association with the Nordic team, including Chief of Course at our home Carnival, our team's faculty affiliate, personal geologist and weather forecaster, among many others...but that's a whole other blogpost!|
|Senior Hans Halvorsen getting creative with the bagel toaster - there's definitely no lack of creativity at the food table!|
|Nick Gardner '19, Eli Hoenig '17, and Jordan Fields '17 enjoying food from the best parents food table in EISA!!|
THANK YOU PARENTS!!!