Sharing the Passion
By Ron Bergin
Cross Country Skier magazine has just concluded its 25th year as the Journal of Nordic Skiing and what fun it's been great to celebrate and commemorate the past quarter-century of cross country skiing. Since we became the publisher of Cross Country Skier over five years ago we have strived to improve every aspect of the magazine. We are pleased and proud to say-and we have numerous reader and industry comments in agreement-that the magazine just keeps getting better.
Our new CCS Racer has infused a new level of diversity to our editorial base-the response to which has been very gratifying. This year we ramp it up to a new level with more technical and racing related information.
A significant part of our mission is to share and spread the passion for the sport of cross country skiing. We try to accomplish this, of course, through the pages of this magazine. In addition, we are reaching out to numerous organizations and clubs around the country to begin to further our solidarity as a community. These organizations are listed on our "CCS Proud Member or Sponsor" section. If you are part of a club or appropriate organization and would like to be counted among those listed, please contact us. Two of these partnerships in particular will have an immediate effect on Cross Country Skier. This season we are proud to partner with the Subaru Factory Team and Central Cross Country Skiing (CXC). Look for increased training related content in the magazine this year as a result of these alliances.
It's also been very gratifying over the past year to see members of our editorial staff reaching major milestones in their own careers. Last year we hailed our Technique and Training columnist Steve Hindman as his book, Cross Country Skiing-Building Skills for Fun and Fitness, was released by The Mountaineers Books. It has had a successful first year and recently saw its second printing. Just recently our Copy Editor, Becky Lomax, authored a comprehensive guide book, Glacier National Park published by Moon Handbooks. And our Executive Editor, Lou Dzierzak, is putting the finishing touches on The Evolution of American Bicycle Racing by Globe Pequot due out this spring. Congratulations Steve, Becky and Lou-you do us proud.
A significant part of our mission is to share and spread the passion for the sport of cross country skiing... we are reaching out to numerous organizations and clubs around the country to begin to further our solidarity as a community.
The cross country ski business continues to be a fickle and challenging enterprise. Every season the weather plays a far greater role than simply requiring a decision about which wax to use. It always seems that one region has a great season while another suffers. This past year was no exception. The East started well, fizzled and made a late comeback. Parts of the Midwest started slow, but made a gradual continued improvements, though it was better and worse in local pockets. North of the border, the Canadian Birkebeiner had to be canceled due to insufficient snow, only to see great snow come in March. In 2004/05, the Sierras were pounded with major snows, while parts of the Pacific Northwest had the majority of their season washed away by rain.
Environmental factors aside, the business climate is changing as well. See our more detailed explanations in this issue. Great equipment continues to flow through the pipeline, but most of the major gear companies have adopted extremely conservative postures. Though you as a consumer may not see any immediate effect, it certainly has made magazine publishing more challenging.
In helping share the passion, we need to reach as many readers as possible. You can help us in this effort. We've had nothing but positive responses to our efforts to improve the quality of Cross Country Skier since assuming its publication now almost six years ago. The quality and quantity of our content and the production values of the magazine, we feel, have elevated it to a position of prominence among Nordic ski publications. It's difficult to promote a cross country ski magazine though; there just aren't many conventional methods that work. You can help. Word of mouth is probably our best method, so share your copy, pass a subscription card along, tell your ski buddies about Cross Country Skier. In other words, share the passion.
Thanks and have a great ski season.
© Cross Country Skier: October 2006, Vol. 26 Issue 1