February 5, 2021
In his 1936 book “Skiing For All” Otto Schniebs reminded us that “A skier should never forget that skis are after all only an instrument, a means, through which we can enjoy winter in all its glory and ruggedness, can breathe clean fresh air, can meet human beings in their true character and can forget all the petty troubles which beset our so-called civilization.”
The Ski Museum of Maine is now the Maine Ski and Snowboard Museum. Our mission is to Celebrate, Preserve and Share the History and Heritage of Skiing and Snowboarding in Maine. For most of us, it has always been about the wintertime mountain experience. “We are simply choosing to use a different tool for descending an alpine environment.” writes Olympic Snowboard Cross Gold Medalist (twice!) Seth Wescott.
By adding snowboarding to our name and our mission we are simply acknowledging that Seth is right, the only difference between skiing and snowboarding is the choice of tool.
As a Museum we have always wanted to understand and preserve our sport’s past. By limiting that to just skiing we were making a decision based on the tool being used. Why do we ski? It is not because we want to strap two skis to our feet. It is because we want to get outside, to “appreciate winter in all its rugged glory”. With that in mind the choice of ski or snowboard becomes no more than a choice of which tool to use. Both accomplish the same thing.
In 1938 Hjalmar Hvam designed and sold the first release toe piece, the Saf-Ski. He used a big swooping “S” to create the image of a ski turn. This is shown on a binding box illustrating how to set up the binding.
That concept of a big swooping S was common in the 1940s and 1950s, as in this clip art from Ski Magazine in 1956.
In our new logo we use that same image. It is both a nod to our sport’s past and a statement that when you look back there is no real difference between a ski turn and a snowboard turn.
As written by Glenn Parkinson