Area skiers, snowboarders and the nonskiing public are invited to take part in the 11th annual CPHS Ski for the Animals fundraising campaign to benefit homeless animals at the Central Pennsylvania Humane Society.
A ski-a-thon is under way, with participants collecting pledges and vying for prizes for the top fundraisers. The grand prize is a choice of a two-night stay in a luxury condo at Blue Knob All-Seasons Resort, Pavia, or a season lift pass.
Both prizes were donated by Blue Knob All-Seasons Resort, a prime sponsor of the campaign.
In addition, Bill Taafe, owner of Spokes n Skis, Lakemont, donated a $300 gift certificate to his store as a special grand prize for area students who participate in a separate competition among school ski clubs to help the shelter.
"We know the prizes will be a major incentive in our fundraising efforts,' said Debbie Pierce, CPHS director of marketing. "Last year, the public and the school clubs combined to raise just over $10,000 for our homeless animals. We hope they can do even better this year.'
To take part in the ski-a-thon, participants collect pledges to contribute money used in helping homeless animals at the shelter. They do not need to ski to take part. The funds can be turned in during the weekend of Feb. 21-22 at the shelter or Blue Knob.
All those who raise $20 or more in pledges will receive a Ski for the Animals T-shirt and bags containing snacks, hand/foot warmers and other personal items (while supplies last).
Other prizes, such as lift tickets, restaurant gift certificates and sports equipment will be given at random and awarded to those collecting donations.
Pledge forms, along with rules, can be picked up at Blue Knob; the CPHS shelter, 1837 E. Pleasant Valley Blvd., Altoona; at local ski/sport shops such as Spokes n Skis or from veterinary offices and selected retail stores in Blair County.
All pledges must be turned in by 4 p.m. Feb. 22.
The campaign will culminate with Race for the Animals, a timed downhill ski race on a Nastar Course, scheduled for Feb. 21. The competitive event awards medals to winners in various age groups. For $5, contestants get two timed runs. Participants should preregister by 11:15 a.m. Feb. 21 at the CPHS table next to ticket windows.
Organizers also will host a Doggie Paddle Race, which will take place at 1 p.m. Feb. 22. For a $ 5 entry fee, contestants will receive a plastic bag and race down the course on their bellies, doggie-paddle style.
Ski for the Animals 2009's major sponsors include Blue Knob All Seasons Resort, Spokes n Skis, Lee Industries, Boston Culinary Group at Blue Knob Ski, Munster Trucking Co., DeGol Organization, The Winds at Mattern Orchard, Allegheny Orthotics and Prosthetics, Allied On Guard, Dave's Sports Collectibles, McCartney's, F.L. Smithe Machine Co. Inc., The Blair Companies, Altoona Neon & Sign, Port Family Foundation, Allegheny Supply and Maintenance Co., Inc., Paul Davis Real Estate, RC's Print Specialists, Saleme Insurance and the Port Family Foundation.
For more information, call CPHS at 942-2477 or Blue Knob Resort at 239-5111 or check with local ski clubs.