The Dryden Observer

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Sledders converge for Easter Seals

Chris Marchand

Chris Marchand served as editor of the Dryden Observer from August 2009 to April 2018.
They’re off! Participants set off across Wabigoon Lake at the start of the 2014 Snowarama run for Easter Seals on Feb. 16. Photos by Samantha Hawkins

By Samantha Hawkins

Roger Gould remembers Dryden’s first Snowarama, back in 1973.

“I won an award for being the youngest participant back then. I have tried to make it to every run since then. It’s always been about helping kids.”

Feb. 16 marked the 41st successful year for Snowarama and Easter Seals in Dryden. This year’s event featured 18 riders and raised over $5,000.

The first recorded event goes all the way back to 1973. The inaugural run had over 40 participants.

That first run went all the way from Dryden to Hudson and back.

“It was an all day event then,” said Rotarian Clare Thompson, “The Rotarians spent the week before packing the trails and we had refueling stops and check points along the way. Sometimes we’d have to round everyone up, someone would go off track and we’d have to go find where they were.”

Thompson remembers one rider in particular every year would raise more money than the rest. “He would come in with a Crown Royal bag stuffed with bills.” He laughed. “He was always the top rider.”

These days people can pledge online which makes tallying the totals difficult until the very end, but with no minimum pledge for participation the event calls to a lot of passionate snowmobilers.

Rotarian volunteer Rena Madden claims that is the key to the events long standing in the community.

“Its all about where your passions are,” Madden said, “If you have someone who is passionate about what they’re doing, they’re more involved.”

Snowarama volunteers and participants gather before the start of the 2014 run.


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