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Rainbow Resort to host XC ski event

The Rainbow Rendezvous brings in skiers of all levels and all ages, from Olympic hopefuls to beginners. The event is designed to give everybody the chance to practice their skills in different styles of cross country skiing. SUBMITTED PHOTO

If there were ever a year for a snowy rendezvous, it would be this year.

Folks at the Rainbow Resort located between Park Rapids and Waubun, are getting ready for the 12th annual Rainbow Rendezvous XC Ski Event.

Skiing for the Rendezvous goes from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 1.

And this year, the trails are everything a ski resort could want for its guests.

“We’ve had 64 inches of snow here so far this year,” said one of the resorts owners, Linda Schumann, who says her husband, Doug, has been all over those 64 inches with his groomers.

“The trails are absolutely excellent,” she said. “The base is almost unbelievable; it’s a good, solid base that is almost bullet proof.”

Those trails can prove adventurous to just about any style skier, too, as they snake around shelter of the mixture of conifer and deciduous trees.

“The terrain is so beautiful and so varied,” said Schumann. “We have some challenging trails with hills, some flatter, some roller coaster hills…so it gives a lot of different types of skiing situations.”

The race will include competitions in the 10K Skate and 10K Classic.

The difference lies within the style.

“Classic skiing is where you have a track set within this nice, deep defined track set,” said Schumann. “Skate is more of a freestyle where it’s not in a groove, but the style is more of a skating effect where they go back and forth and the trail is groomed much wider for that.”

For the skiers interested in the joys of the sport without the competition, the event will also feature a 6K and 10K tour.

“That’s for the more casual type of skier who just wants to be out there doing the loop without it necessarily being a timed race,” said Schumann.

“So maybe families or some of the beginners or just the relaxed type of skier would enjoy that.”

For some Rendezvous participants there will be medals and awards; for all registered participants there will be soup, coffee, cookies and hot chocolate afterwards.

“It’s such a fun event,” said Schumann, who says there will be live music and all kinds of winter activities to do, including snowshoeing, sledding and ice skating.

And if visitors are lucky, they may even bump into a world-class skier or two.

“I have invited several skiers that had been training for this winter Olympics,” said Amy Xu, event coordinator and resort partner.

“They are native Minnesotans; some of them will be participating in the closing ceremony in Sochi and some of those didn’t get to go but were close.”

Xu says she believes events like the one at Rainbow Resort have a real connection with the winter Olympics, as its participants often come from non-professional genres.

“They’re normal people with families and jobs who also manage to train for a competition like the Olympics, and it’s these type of events and people I think we need to support.”

People of all ages are welcome to the Rainbow Rendezvous, which is $40 per person.

Participants can also register as teams.

For the first time, there is also online registration available on the resort’s website at

“In only about four weeks and we won’t be able to ski anymore,” said Xu, “so I encourage everybody to just come out and have a good time because there is still a lot of beauty out there.”