Volunteer likes big races | VailDaily.com

Volunteer likes big races

Scott N. Miller
Tenie Chicoine is the Vail Valley Foundation's volunteer of the year.

EAGLE COUNTY – Retirement hasn’t really worked out for Tenie Chicoine. An active sort, Chicoine was looking for something to do after she and her husband moved to the area in 1996. Her daughter-in-law suggested Chicoine might want to do some volunteer work, so she volunteered for a World Cup mountain bike race the Vail Valley Foundation sponsored in 1997, and things just kept rolling from there.

Since that first taste of volunteering for big sporting events, Chicoine has been the volunteer coordinator for the 1999 World Alpine Ski Championships and numerous other World Cup and American Ski Classic events. She has also donated her time to the Jimmie Heuga Center, the Brush Creek Community Playground in Eagle and the Vail Mountain School Home Tour.”I like being involved,” she said. The Vail Valley Foundation Saturday honored Chicoine for her involvement when it presented her with the Ernie Bender Volunteer of the Year award at the annual Black Diamond Ball.”Volunteers are the backbone of the Vail Valley Foundation,” said Terry Brady, the foundation’s vice president of operations and sales. “We are incredibly fortunate to have a committed and selfless person like Tenie as an integral part of all of our events.”

For Chicoine, the work involved in putting on a World Cup ski race isn’t as much a job as it is a chance to catch up with old friends and make new ones.”It’s so much fun,” she said. “Everyone’s so pleasant and outgoing.”About 500 volunteers worked on last week’s Birds of Prey ski races. Most know each other from previous events. And many of the athletes and coaches passing through are familiar faces, too.”It’s like old home week,” she said. “It’s amazing that there are so many people here who want to volunteer,” she added. “I’ve met so many people from all over the world.”

Staff Writer Scott N. Miller can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 14624, or smiller@vaildaily.com.Vail Daily, Vail Colorado

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