Reeve won’t attend American Ski Classic
Reeve and his paralysis foundation have declined to participate in this year’s classic, a spokeswoman said, because the amount of money that has been raised at the event over the last two years for his foundation hasn’t been enough to justify the expense of attending the event, hosted annually by the Vail Valley Foundation.
The Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation is seeking a cure for spinal cord injuries, and was selected to be a beneficiary of the Ski Classic’s Hope in Motion dinner and auction. In 2000 the event succeeded in raising nearly $250,000 for Reeve’s foundation, but last year, just $78,000 was collected.
“For whatever reason auction (proceeds) have dropped off sharply since 2000,” said Amy Hunneywell, director of special events for the Reeve foundation. “It’s gone down significantly in the last two years. We reached a mutual agreement with the Vail Valley Foundation. We certainly weren’t at odds.”
Reeve, an actor who is best known for portraying Superman, suffered a spinal cord injury in a fall from a horse during an equestrian event in 1997 in Virginia. Since then he has pushed the medical and research community to develop a cure for spinal cord injuries, which affect more than 250,000 people nationwide. Reeve had been an able-bodied participant in the ski classic, and after his injury his foundation was selected in 1999 as a beneficiary of the funds raised at the event’s auction.
The classic will be held March 17 through 20. Vail Valley Foundation Spokeswoman Cara Herron said her organization will be designating a replacement nonprofit organization as a beneficiary for the event’s fundraising activities.
Cliff Thompson can be reached via e-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 949-0555 ext. 450.