Snow Express finals steam into Vail
The Jimmie Heuga Center turns 20 this week as Jimmie Huega’s Olympic alpine skiing medal celebrates its 40th anniversary.
It’s a party.
The Jimmie Heuga Center celebrates its birthday with the 19th Annual Jimmie Heuga Snow Express for MS International Finals in Vail and Beaver Creek, beginning Thursday and running through Monday.
The event climaxes a season of fund-raising for The Heuga Center, which promotes health and creating hope for people living with MS. It’s also the 40th anniversary of Heuga’s, Olympic bronze medal in 1964.
As a tribute to Jimmie Heuga and The Heuga Center, Governor Bill Owens has proclaimed Friday, April 2, as Jimmie Heuga and The Heuga Center Day across Colorado. Owens said the declaration honors Heuga’s personal accomplishments and attitude towards adversity, and The Heuga Center’s success in revolutionizing the way MS is managed over the past 20 years.
Since January, Snow Express for MS races have been held at 15 resorts in the U.S. and Canada. The event winners and top fund-raisers also won expense-paid trips to Vail and Beaver Creek for the Finals. The Snow Express is the primary fund-raiser for The Heuga Center, which helps people with MS through its innovative CAN DO Programs.
This year’s Snow Express Finals for MS combine racing and public events in four-days of fun and celebration. While the races are open only to qualifiers from this year’s Snow Express events, everyone is invited to The Heuga Center’s 20th Birthday Bash. The event featuring a live and silent auction, drinks, dinner and dancing to The Hazel Miller Band, on Friday, April 2, from 6 p.m. to midnight at the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek. The theme is “Super Heroes!” and participants are encouraged to come dressed as their favorite super-hero. Tickets are $75 and can be purchased by calling The
Heuga Center, 926-1290.
At 4 p.m. Thursday, April 1, at 4 p.m. at the Colorado Ski Museum in Vail, there will be a drawing to match ski celebrities and Olympians with Snow Express teams. Festivities move to Vail’s Black Forest Race Arena on Friday, April 2, with a dual Giant Slalom at 10 a.m., followed immediately by a Celebrity Challenge race, pitting the top 10 celebrities head-to-head against the 10 fastest Snow Express participants.
On Saturday, competitors run the Mountain Challenge Poker Run. They’ll follow clues around Vail Mountain to stations where they snag playing cards. The fastest team with the best poker hand wins.
The awards ceremony and dinner is set for 6 p.m., Saturday, April 3 at the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek. Individual tickets and corporate tables are available for $60 per person. Call The Heuga Center, 926-1290, for reservations.
AT A GLANCE
Snow Express Schedule
– 4 p.m.: Drawings to pair celebrities and Olympians with Snow Express teams
– Jimmie Heuga Day, declared by Colorado Gov. Bill Owens.
– 10 a.m.: Dual giant slalom at Vail’s Black Forest race course. That event is followed immediately by the Celebrity Challenge Race.
– 6 p.m. to midnight: Heuga Center’s 20th anniversary bash. Dinner, dancing and live auction as revelers come dressed for the evening’s theme, “Super Heroes.” Park Hyatt Beaver Creek. Tickets are $75. Call 926-1290.
– Mountain Challenge Poker Run.
– 6 p.m.” Awards ceremony and dinner at the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek. Tickets are $60. Call 926-1290.