Reader Opinion: Lumberjack Jaunt


One of the longest running Nordic ski races in the state of Minnesota was held at the Northland Arboretum on Sunday, Feb. 2. I anxiously awaited Monday's Dispatch to see the coverage as one of your photographers was present. The front page photo was darling -- showing the future of Nordic skiing. All the race results were also published. However, the Dispatch neglected to even mention the reason this race exists today -- it's founder, Shirley Lintner. Shirley passed away this past September. Shirley was the founder of the Lumberjack Jaunt in 1975 and the Brainerd Nordic Ski Club and its annual ski swap. She was instrumental in establishing the ski trails at the Northland Arboretum and French Rapids. Many young adults and kids fondly remember Shirley as their physical education teacher at Lincoln Elementary for 15 years.

Just prior to the start of the Classic and Freestyle races, a bronze plaque was dedicated in honor and in memory of Shirley. It is permanently installed on a kiosk at a main intersection of the Arb's cross-country ski trails. A simple photo of the dedication plaque and the mention of Shirley's huge impact on the sport of cross-country skiing in the area would have been a wonderful way to cover the full story of the Lumberjack Jaunt.

Gloria Thomas


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