Kathleen Groenewegen is the new president of the Hay River Ski Club.

Kathleen Groenewegen: the new president of the Hay River Ski Club. NNSL file photo

She was chosen to lead the organization at its annual general meeting on Oct. 19.

“I feel that the Hay River Nordic Centre is one of Hay River’s greatest community assets and I’m happy to be involved in promoting it,” she said.

Joining Groenewegen on the new executive are vice-president Doug Swallow, treasurer Drew Queen, secretary David MacDonald, youth co-ordinator Belinda Whitford and Robert Plamondon, who is in charge of trails.

Groenewegen previously was on the executive as youth co-ordinator for three years.

She has been elected to serve as president for one year.

Asked about her goals as president, Groenewegen said, “It will really be a team effort. There’s a lot going on this year, so we’re pulling together to leverage everyone’s time and skills as much as possible.”

Among the many activities this year will be the South Slave Arctic Winter Games, which will use the Hay River Nordic Centre for three sports – snowshoe races, snowshoe biathlon and skiing biathlon

Groenewegen has been coaching young skiers for a few years and plans to continue to do so.

“I’ll still be involved in coaching,” she said. “I’m still really passionate about fostering the sport in our youth.”

Plus she noted the club is looking for other people interested in coaching, adding that coaching training can be provided.

Groenewegen said the club will also be offering youth programming, adult clinics and many other events.

The former president of the club was Doug Swallow, who did not seek re-election because he is chair of biathlon with the Arctic Winter Games.

“So it would be good if someone else looked after the day-to-day stuff,” he said of running the ski club.

Both Groenewegen and Swallow noted the Hay River Ski Club is planning to recognize the late Pat Bobinski, who passed away on July 30 at the age of 77.

Bobinski was vice-president of the club and looked after the trails.

“Those are big boots to fill,” said Swallow, who said there was discussion at the AGM about how to recognize Bobinski, and the matter was tabled until the next meeting in mid-November.

“We will be planning something,” said Groenewegen, noting the club executive is talking about different options to remember and honour Bobinski.

Paul Bickford

Paul Bickford is the reporter for Hay River Hub.

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