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Readers Respond: Glen Plake, Pat Paré

 

 

SKIING HISTORY

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Readers Respond: Glen Plake, Pat Paré

Glen Plake, the Pied Piper of Skiing

Edie Thys Morgan’s excellent profile of Glen Plake (“Evolution of Rebel,” May-June 2020) perfectly captured the person I call the “World’s Most Recognized Skier.” I’ve always been proud to call Glen and his wife, Kimberly, friends. I admire his enthusiasm for all things ski—especially the roots of freestyle—and the way he connects with all kinds, and all ages, of skiers.

Over the years, Glen has appeared many times at ski shows I’ve produced. He immediately attracts a crowd—just like he does when at the many small ski areas that he and Kimberly visit on their Down Home Ski Tours. He always makes time to talk, to pose for pictures, sign posters and, in general, make everyone feel like the most important person he’s met that day! Glen Plake is the best ambassador our sport has ever had, a true “natural resource” that the World of Snow is lucky to have. 

Bernie Weichsel
BEWI Productions
Waltham, Massachusetts

Photo above: Plake (center, blue parka) attracts fans at Mad River Glen in Vermont (above) and Black Mountain in Maine (center, plaid shirt) on his Down Home tours of small U.S. ski areas. Wallace Brodeur photo.

All Downhill For Pat Paré

I wanted to contribute a little more information about my mother, Pat Paré, who raced at the Seigniory Club with the Penguins (“Canada’s Forgotten Ski Center,” Skiing History, September-October 2020). As the story explained, in February 1939, she was 21 years old and known for her nerve. She raced out West, in Canada and the United States, at Mont Tremblant and everywhere else she could. But years later she told us, her six children, that at the time she hadn’t yet learned to ski. She just pointed herself straight down the hills, and either she crashed or got to the bottom first. That year she won the downhill at the Women’s Dominion Ski Championships at the Seigniory. She could not have won the slalom.

My grandfather lamented the cost of her medical bills to Bill Oliver, the head of Noorduyn Aviation, asking for his help because now she wanted to learn to fly. He was sure she was going to kill herself trying. Oliver called one of his pilots into his office, an airplane mechanic from Toronto who’d been flying since he was 14 years old, and told him the daughter of a rich friend was coming in to learn to fly. “Take her up, give her a good scare, and send her home,” he said. Mom never got her license, but she got her pilot, my father.

Joseph Graham
Ste-Lucie-des-Laurentides, Quebec

 

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