Warm weather and a lack of snow have forced organizers to cancel the annual American Birkebeiner cross country ski race near Hayward, Wisconsin. And when a predicted snowstorm missed the Hayward and Cable areas Friday, American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation officials had little choice but to call off the race, which is North America's largest cross-country ski race.
Organizers say that if more snow doesn't come by Saturday, they might scrap the slate of races altogether and hold a street party. Participants will be able to ski a 5K route and listen to live music instead of racing.
"It's certainly disappointing", Popp said. "Birkie week, that goes up exponentially".
The accompanying races, Kortelopet and Prince Haakon, are also canceled.
The National Weather Service is predicting a winter storm with significant snowfall will move into the region between late Thursday and early Saturday.
According to Fox 21, the Birkie course has been altered nine other times in its history due because of low snow or open ice, but has only been canceled once before, in 2000.
The popular sports bar has many local beer selections, including the Birkie beer, brewed in Menominee. "Birkie skiers are passionate about the overall experience", he said. There will be many other activities still available throughout the day.