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Depot Donation (Posted On: Tuesday, February 17, 2009)

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A significant donation was kindly received by the Craigleith Heritage Depot last Wednesday during a recent tour by the Georgian Triangle Finnish Club. A wooden ski, made in the early 1940’s, was donated to the Museum by Ilene Crossan, former assistant to the Chair of the Choo Choo gala fundraising committee. This wooden ski is unique as it serves as a time capsule with its many signatures from the night of January 30th, 2004 – the first Choo Choo gala in which $47,000 was raised for the restoration of the iconic landmark – the Craigleith Depot train station. One signature of note is that of Nancy Greene-Raine’s a local ski hero, now Senator, and an honorary member of the Craigleith Heritage Depot.

The ski pre dates the usage of steel edges on downhill skis and the bindings consist of a steel and

leather slot to secure the toe and a metal cable which one would tighten around the heel. A lug was in place near the heel area of the ski which could be altered, allowing the skier to convert from downhill to cross country skiing. The amount of skill required to successfully maneuver down the hill on such skis was truly impressive. Video footage from this era shows skiers using a much different style of downhill skiing requiring movement of the upper body, much different than the streamlined style of skiing we see today.

The donated ski will make a fitting addition to the Depot’s donor wall of recognition honoring the many volunteers and donors who helped make the restoration of the building such a success. The Museum area of the Depot features a display on the history of the ski industry in our Town, which has become a very popular attraction for visiting skiers to the area.

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