2017 ASJ Hall of Fame Banquet Held August 5 in Red Wing
Six inducted … Canada’s legendary Steve Collins was our honored guest
A crowd of over 100 enjoyed a dinner followed by the induction ceremony for the Class of 2017 into the
American Ski Jumping Hall of Fame.
The first segment of the program was devoted to recognizing Steve Collins, the legendary Canadian teenager
who electrified the sport in the early 1980s. He was introduced as an honorary member of the ASJ HOF by
Greg Windsperger, US Olympian and former US Jumping Team coach, and a short video called
“Thunderbird” was shown, which ended with one of Steve’s dramatic flights in World Cup competition at age
fifteen, in Lahti FIN. The hill record was 114 meters; Steve flew 124; the second place jumper went 114.5.
He was the star of a strong Canadian team which was coached by a former US Olympian, Bill Bakke.
Steve is a First Nation Canadian,
and his grandfather Charlie Collins
was a member of the Prairie Island
community in the Red Wing area
prior to moving to Canada; the
Prairie Island community owns the
golf course where this banquet was
held, and the new 125 meter “Baldy” jump will be built on the east end of the golf course property. It was an
honor to have Steve present as this project is about to transition from planning to construction! Following
remarks by Steve, he introduced his chief, Peter Collins, who also spoke briefly.
VIDEOS: Greg’s introduction of Steve “Thunderbird” Remarks by Steve and Peter
For more info on the new jump, including link to a preview video, see www.baldy125.com
American Ski Jumping President Bryan Sanders made some remarks about the history of the Red Wing
and St Paul Ski Clubs, and about the new ski jump project, then introduced each of the five inductees who
were either present in person, or who had family members there to accept their awards and make some
personal remarks. Read individual bios and view the presentation and acceptance via video links below.
Click names to view bio documents
Reuben Hamari posthumously
Bobby Immens posthumously
Wally Wakefield posthumously
Congratulations to the ASJHOF Class of 2017!
New K125 Jump Near Red Wing MN - Update
Articles: Mpls Star Tribune July 31 Rochester Post-Bulletin July 26
The Goodhue County Board of Commissioners unanimously paved the way
for an Olympic-level ski-jumping facility to be built at Mount Frontenac just
south of Red Wing. The land, owned by the Prairie Island Indian
Community, is currently home to Mount Frontenac Golf Course, and
previously was home to the Mt Frontenac Ski Area. read article
The final hill profile design was received from contributing FIS architect
Hans Martin Renn in late April, with the K-point at 125 meters, hill size
The project will be developed in conjunction with the Prairie Island tribe, which owns the golf course and the
nearby Treasure Island Casino. Tribal officials attended the US large-hill National Championships in Park
City in late July 2016, and are enthused about bringing this sport back to the site of its American roots.
Preview website: www.baldy125.com click photo to enlarge site plan view
Wally Wakefield Passes Away, Was a Founder of ASJ
Wally Wakefield was one of the key people involved in the
founding of Friends of American Ski Jumping, the parent
organization of the American Ski Jumping Museum and Hall of
Fame. He passed away May 2, 2017, in St Paul. He was a
competitor back in the 1940s and 50s, and a tireless volunteer
with the youth programs at the St Paul Ski Club throughout his life.
He was a member of the SPSC Hall of Fame. In addition, he was
a columnist and sportswriter in St Paul and the eastern suburbs for
many years. During the past ten years, he served as the chairman
of the Selection Committee for the American Ski Jumping Hall of
Fame. Click photo at left for enlarged view.
The Wakefield family held a "Celebration of Life" for Wally on Sunday May 14, 2017 at the American Legion in
North St Paul, followed by a gathering at the St Paul Ski Club to place Wally’s ashes near Wakefield Hill, the
10 meter jump which is named after him. Official Obituary (May 7, 2017) View Wally’s SPSC HOF bio
FIS Officials Visit New Jump Site, Very Impressed
FIS officials recently visited Mt. Frontenac Ski Jump site in Welch, MN - just
south of Red Wing (6miles) Friends of American Ski Jumping (FOASJ) is
working with Prairie Island Indian Community (land owner and operator of
Mt. Frontenac Golf Course) to build a new world class K120 hill. Pictured
L-R are: Dennis Egan - former mayor Red Wing, Ueli Forrer - FIS, Scott
Smith - Board President, Bryan Sanders - CEO, Horst Tielmann - FIS, Billy
Demong - 2010 Olympics Gold Medalist, Paul Ragozzino - Engineer, and
David Solner - Architect. click photo to enlarge
Women’s Ski Jumping USA
Ski Jumping &
US Ski Team Nordic Sports
click logos to visit websites
National Ski Hall of Fame
Skiing Heritage Magazine
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Learning to Ski Jump in 1947 ... 20th Century Fox Movie Newsreel Footage!
This is what kids were doing back in the late 1940s if they lived
near a ski jump and had big dreams of flying!
This 20th Century Fox newsreel footage was filmed in Iron
Mountain, Michigan, and one of the featured jumpers is 2009
ASJ HOF inductee Willie Erickson, at age 11 (he’s the one who
identified the year for us!).
Those old enough to remember newsreels at the movies will
possibly recognize the voice of the narrator, Mel Allen, famed
voice of the New York Yankees.
The equipment has changed, the facilities look much different
today, but ski jumpers start young, on small hills, just like they did
Your webmaster, and many of the folks involved with the
American Ski Jumping Hall of Fame, will remember scenes just
like these. Younger athletes will have different pictures in their
heads, but they will all remember one thing they have in common
... experiencing the thrill of flight and always wanting more!
Welcome to American Ski Jumping … Past, Present, and Future
We recently received this photo of Lenny Johnson
(HOF ‘16) and Kip Sundgaard (HOF ‘08) with uniform
worn by Bill Mahre (HOF ‘15), official starter at the
Lake Placid Olympics, 1980. Click to enlarge.