Wednesday, November 3, 2004

28th Annual Fall Game Dinner

SVSEF honors the original cowboy skier

28th Annual Fall Game Dinner

Jack Simpson

The 28th Annual Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation Fall Game Dinner takes place on Sunday, Nov. 14 in the Limelight room of the Sun Valley Inn.

This year the event features the inaugural Jack Simpson Dedicated Coach Award. The Simpson family developed the $500 award after viewing a video, made by local filmmaker David Butterfield, about the early days of the SVSEF at the Janss Pro Am in March this year. They were honored by the tribute to Jack and decided to create the award to be presented to a past or present ski/snowboard team coach who emulated Simpson?s personal values.

Known as the ?original cowboy skier,? Simpson was born and raised on a farm in Wendell. He learned ?cowboying? on a ranch near Fairfield before moving to Ketchum in 1939, where skiing became his new passion.

At 16 years old Simpson set the course record in the Sun Valley?s Diamond Sun ski race and proceeded to make his mark in the ski world. In 1960 he devoted his time to putting together a Sun Valley junior racing program. Over the next 10 years Jack dedicated his life to his "kids."

He was a man who practiced what he preached and led by example. Jack felt that every youth in the community deserved an opportunity to compete on even terms with youth from other areas. His vision helped the Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing winter sports programs for the youth of the Wood River Valley, become a reality. The award will be presented by Mary Lou Simpson.

Other festivities at the dinner include live and silent auctions, a mystery balloon sale and a season ski pass raffle. ?Our sponsors have been amazingly generous this year,? said Kate Berman of the SVSEF. Live auction packages include; the use of a 96-foot private yacht for one week, the opportunity to hang out in the pit with Army One Race Team at NASCAR Las Vegas, a handmade quilt by world renowned textile artist Leslie Rego, a Mackay Wilderness river trip for a family of four, an Argentinian Lamb Asado traditional BBQ for 60 people and, the jewel in the crown, Warm Springs parking for the 2004-2005 ski season. For those unable to attend there will be representatives available to place bids by proxy.

Tickets for the event, which regularly sells out, are $65 per person including wine and a game dinner. Proceeds benefit The Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation. For reservations or to place bids call 726-4129 x102 or email

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