Meijer Statewide Winter Games in Marquette in February | News, Sports, Jobs


Eric Engelbarts, executive director of the Meijer State Games of Michigan, shows the types of medals that will be awarded at his Winter Games in Marquette from February 25-27. Engelbarts visited the Marquette Mountain Resort on Tuesday, where the opening ceremony will take place. (Diary photo by Christie Mastric)

MARQUETTE – 2022 is an official year of the Winter Olympics, but these sports will also make a special appearance this winter in Marquette.

Michigan Sports Alliance officials announced that registration has started for the Meijer State Games of Michigan-Winter Games sports center in Marquette, an inaugural event scheduled for February 25-27.

The Meijer State Games, open to all ages and skill levels, is a traditional winter sports festival that features eight sporting events at six venues as well as an opening ceremony on February 25 presented by Northern Michigan University.

Sports at the Winter Games will include cross-country skiing, curling, figure skating, ice hockey, tobogganing, Nordic combined, skiing and snowboarding and ski jumping. Entry fees vary by sport and can be viewed on each sport’s webpage.

All registered athletes and spectators will receive free entry to the Opening Ceremony, which will be held at the Marquette Mountain Resort and will include a parade of athletes, the lighting of the cauldron and entertainment will be announced.

Games executive director Eric Engelbarts was at Marquette Mountain on Tuesday to scout the location.

Engelbarts said the search for the venue for the Winter Games had started through the Great Lakes Sports Commission, with several other cities interested in hosting the games.

“Looking at the proposal from Travel Marquette and all the partners they had brought to the table, it was almost obvious that Marquette was going to be the perfect location to launch this kind of traditional new type of Winter Games, and work on it. our way in the community, it was only support ”, said Engelbarts. “It was a great addition to the Meijer State Games in Michigan, and we can’t wait to start here in February. “

Sometimes a lot of snow can be an advantage for holding such an event.

Engelbarts said the Winter Games kicked off several years ago in the Grand Rapids area, with skiing and snowboarding being part of the event.

“The snow became irregular, and we ended up having to cancel two or three years in a row”, said Engelbarts, who noted that the Winter Games were essentially summer – or indoor – sports.

Then came COVID-19.

“One of the beautiful things the pandemic has done was give us a little more time to think about it and be able to go out and find a host who will allow us to ski, snowboard, toboggan and ski. background. skiing – everything you usually associate with the Winter Games ”, said Engelbarts.

He acknowledged that the Winter Games are an Olympic-style multisport event, but participants don’t have to be an Olympian to compete, with all ages and abilities welcome. There will be adapted divisions, he said, in cross-country skiing, and there will be a sledge hockey exhibit as part of the youth hockey tournament.

The current sponsors of the Meijer State Games of Michigan-Winter Games in Marquette are Meijer, Travel Marquette, NMU, Great Lakes Sports Commission, Upper Peninsula Health Plan, Superior Alliance for Independent Living Disability Network and Peninsula Fiber Network.

“NMU is delighted to sponsor the opening ceremonies of the Winter Games”, the university said in a statement. “Our hope is to recruit future students as we introduce our campus and our community to competitors and their families.”

For more information on registration, sporting rules and site locations, visit www.stategamesofmichigan.com/marquette-winter-games.

The Michigan Sports Alliance is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit created in 2016 to encourage Michigan residents of all ages and abilities to lead active, healthy lives. MISA is the operator of the Meijer State Games of Michigan-Winter and Summer Games. The Meijer State Games of Michigan are a member of the National Congress of State Games and are one of 30 State Games programs in the United States.

Christie Mastric can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 250. His email address is cbleck @ miningjournal. report.

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