On January 26, more than 160 participants and an equal number of volunteers and spectators ignored the wind and cold to join in the fun at Hidden Valley Nature Center’s third annual Biathlon. The focus was on family fun with team names and costumes winning prizes along with best times.
Over 16 teams joined in the festivities with names and costumes to match. Winners included the Slammin’ Sammies for their aquatic themed costumes, and West Glide Story for their cheeky team name. In addition, many other teams and individuals sported great costumes.
Another remarkable aspect of the day was the international showing from Lincoln Academy. Four students, most of whom had never skied or shot before, took to the course and participated with gusto. They represented Korea, China and Rwanda and they were warmly welcomed.
Thanks go to the many business which provided prizes for the athletes, all 40 volunteers who made the event happen, and all the great sponsors including The Liberal Cup, Bath Savings Institution, Reny’s, Newcastle Dodge Chrysler Jeep, Teens to Trails, Maine Winter Sports Center and Southern Maine Biathlon Club.
Biathlon is an Olympic sport combining two very different activities. After 1 km of energetic cross country skiing, each participant lies on the ground to shoot an air rifle, in HVNC’s case, supplied by Maine Winter Sports Center. After the heart pounding ski, the shooting requires calm and stillness. For every missed shot, the racer has to ski a penalty lap, putting them behind the competition.