INTERNATIONAL SNOWMOBILE CONGRESS: >> INTERNATIONAL SNOWMOBILERS TACKLE THE ISSUES IN GREEN BAY, WIS. A RICH TRADITION OF TEAM BUILDING M ost often, when we talk of building a strong team, our thoughts go to sports like baseball, hockey, soccer or football. Mention Green Bay, Wis., in the same breath and it is of course the Green Bay Packers and their rich tradition of hard pounding, trophywinning football that comes to mind. No matter what your team colors, football fans around the world are mesmerized by the tales of the famous Curly Lambeau and Vince Lombardi and their ability to build winning teams. Yet there is no team more willing to tackle even the toughest challenges to reach their goal than that of the diehard snowmobile enthusiasts who gathered at the Radisson Hotel & Conference Center in Green Bay on June 5-8 for the 45th Annual International Snowmobile Congress (ISC) hosted by the Association of Wisconsin Snowmobile Clubs (AWSC). This year’s 487 delegates from the United States, Canada and Russia came ready to face the ongoing challenges to the future of snowmobiling, working together to address land access disputes, trail closures, funding shortages, and decreased membership to clubs and associations. For guests arriving prior to the ISC’s official kick off Wednesday evening, it was a perfect opportunity to take a bus ride to the famous Eagle River Derby Track, home of the world championship races, and the World Snowmobile Headquarters next door. Meanwhile, 76 enthusiastic bingo players gathered for an afternoon of fundraising to benefit the Friends of Snowmobiling Political Action Committee (FOSPAC). As evening settled in, the doors to Wisconsin’s hospitality room opened for the Welcome Reception where a wide array of Wisconsin snacks and beverages were available for sampling. Although ISC delegates are known to stay up late enjoying the social aspect of this three-day conference, they do so knowing that the 7 a.m. breakfast call is also the kickoff to a full day of meetings, educational sessions and networking. Guest speakers at this year’s breakfast meetings included Wisconsin Department of Tourism Secretary Stephanie Klett, with a lighthearted overview of the importance of snowmobiling to the economy; Ed Klim, President of the International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association (ISMA) with a review of sled sales in the U.S. and worldwide; and Jim Morrison of the National Speakers Association discussing leadership skills and communication. Following the breakfast session, delegates made their way to meetings of the American Council of Snowmobile Associations (ACSA) and its chapters (Midwest, Northeast and Western); Canadian Council of Snowmobile Organizations, the International Association of Snowmobile Administrators (IASA); International Snowmobile Media Council (ISMC); International Snowmobile Tourism Council (ISTC); International Snowmobile Council (ISC); and the Iron Dog Brigade. Breakout sessions were also held on Friday providing enhanced educational opportunities for attendees. Sessions included: 20 Minnesota Snowmobiling Youth Snowmobile Program; What Does “Multiple Use Trails” Really Mean?; Shortcuts to Land Use & Volunteerism; the Clean Snowmobile Challenge; Signs… the Changing Times; Enhancing Your Website; Groomer Drag Operations; and Advice for Successful Grooming Operation. Throughout ISC, delegates were reminded that it is important to mix a good dose of fun in with all the work we ask our volunteers to do for snowmobiling, and this year’s hosts took that message to heart. Always a highlight at ISC is Thursday evening’s off-site excursion, an opportunity for guests to leave the confines of the hotel and see a bit of the local culture. A visit to Lambeau Field, home of the iconic Green Bay Packers, was just the ticket for this year’s guests where they were invited to tour the Hall of Fame, visit the Pro Shop, and FOUR GENERATIONS OF SNOWMOBILERS RECOGNIZED AS ACSA FAMILY OF THE YEAR The Paul and Vicki Johnson family of St. Peter, Minnesota was honored at Saturday’s Award Banquet as the American Council of Snowmobile Associations’ Family of the Year. They are members of the Nicollet County Trail Association. Their snowmobiling family consists of four generations of enthusiasts ranging in age from three to 72; eight family members were on hand to receive the award.