USASA Nationals concluded just under one week ago, and there is word that some competitors are still resisting to take off their medals. Here at USASA, we view that as a pretty big sign of success! Objectively, however, we had ski and snowboard athletes come from 49 of 50 the United States from their respective series, as well as a small number of international competitors. This culminated in a total 1,641 competitors, and over 2,500 single event entries in slopestyle, slalom, halfpipe, giant slalom, and boardercross/skiercross.
In order to accommodate growth of the organization and to offer the Nationals experience to more competitors, we split up USASA Nationals into Snowboard Nationals and Ski Nationals for the first time in 22 years. This was a great success judging by the increase in both overall attendance and by the participation of our ski community.
Over the course of the 2 weeks, we saw just about every weather situation: wind, 60 degrees, clouds and flat light, 10 degrees below zero, intense sun, and two consecutive Sunday afternoons that challenged us with dumping snow. Each day, the competitors at all venues did an amazing job of gauging the situation, adjusting their riding, and continuing to have positive attitudes.
There were impressive tricks by all ages being thrown down at halfpipe and slopestyle, and some very impressive racing going on at the slalom, giant slalom and boardercross venues. The competition got especially heated during Open Class, where athletes were not only competing for gold medals, but also money and ranking points.
Hundreds of new National Champions were honored at the awards ceremonies, which happened each day after the events were finished. The Burning Squares area was consistently full of competitors and family/friends alike cheering on these athletes after each day of competition.
In addition to competition, the athletes had many extracurriculars to take part in, from the dance put on by Windell's (which raises money for the USASA Scholarship Fund), to rail jams organized by Woodward, to the very well-attended Monster Mash halfpipe event held on Tuesday, April 5th.
USASA thanks all of the competitors, families, friends, volunteers, spectators, and staff for making this such a successful 2011 USASA Nationals!