The U.S. Ski & Snowboard moguls team is hosting a virtual fundraiser on its Facebook page next week even as the upcoming competition schedule is still up in the air due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Still, the U.S. Moguls ski team still is hard at work training at U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s Center of Excellence and the water ramps above the pool up at the Utah Olympic Park.
The “Moguls and Muffins” fundraiser will be held virtually on U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s Facebook page at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 18. Olympic freestyle skier Trace Worthington will be one of the hosts of the event, along with teammates Sean Smith and Hannah Kearney, and says the broadcast will be a great opportunity for fans to get a look at what the team gets up to when there is no real snow on the ground.
“We’ll just be kind of a little bit of a desk area, having some fun, talking about the mogul team, talking about the fundraiser, raising funds for the moguls team and then they’ll be in the background training,” Worthington said. “We’re just going to keep our distance, obviously, so they can do their thing in the background and give everyone a little sneak peek behind the scenes of what they’re doing.”
By law, U.S. Ski & Snowboard cannot accept any federal money to fund its programs so fundraisers like Moguls and Muffins are essential in order for the team’s athletes to travel to international competitions each year.
Worthington adds not having the ability to host in-person fundraisers due to the pandemic does present a challenge, but hosting this year’s fundraiser virtually could open things up to more people than before.
“This is one way they’re going to do it for the mogul team and they do it every year but this year, obviously, we’re going to kind of do it as a virtual fun thing opposed to face-to-face,” he said.
Jaelin Kauf will be one of the athletes jumping off the UOP’s water ramps during the fundraiser and says even though she does not know what her competition season will look like just yet, she still plans on training like she is going into any other winter.
“I’m definitely hoping for the best, hoping that we still have a full competition season, but right now for us there’s not a whole lot that we can do,” she said. “So we’re just, as athletes, just focusing on our training right now and continuing to train and progress as if we’re going into any other normal competition season.”
For more information about the Moguls and Muffins fundraiser, visit the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Facebook page.