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BRATTLEBORO — A time honored tradition is set for this weekend, with all the excitement and anticipation that comes with it.

The annual Harris Hill Ski Jumping Competition begins on Saturday, showcasing not only the sport of ski jumping, but to some extent the town of Brattleboro as well.

“The Harris Hill Ski Jump is the only Olympic sized ski jump in New England. To have such a rich tradition of over a hundred years here allows us to showcase some of the wonderful things that Brattleboro has to offer,” said owner of MGPR Group, Melissa Gullotti, who is promoting the event. “We get to watch these jumpers, many of whom shortly after competing in the ski jump usually end up in the Olympics. ... It’s a pretty special event.”

The event is important to many members of the community. Todd Einig is competition chief on the organizing committee for the Harris Hill Ski Jumping Competition, and he operates the Harris Hill Junior Jumping Program, training the next generation of local jumpers. He also competed in the event himself for several years. His wife Kathryn Einig serves on the organizing committee as the volunteer coordinator. Todd Einig indicated that the number of volunteers involved in the event serves as evidence of what the event means to people in the community.

“My wife Kathryn gets 55-60 volunteers for the weekend to help the event run and without those people the event doesn’t run,” Todd Einig said. “There’s a sense of willingness from the community to see it through and people are passionate about it and they come back every year.”

The event not only means a lot to the community, but to the jumpers who compete in it as well. At 90-meters, Harris Hill is one of the largest hills in New England. The event draws some of the top ski jumpers throughout the country, as well as international jumpers.

“It makes our event an international event,” Todd Einig said. “It makes it that next level event, not only for us as a committee, but for the crowd to see kids, from Norway, Slovenia, or Austria or wherever they’re coming from. Then for the other competitors it kind of elevates them as competitors ... to bring their best game to the jump that day.”

Brattleboro’s Spencer Knickerbocker, executive director of the Marlboro Nordic Ski Club, has competed in the event every year since 2009 and said the event is unique and important to the community.

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“I think it’s a really important event. I think it’s one of the biggest events that happens in the winter time locally,” he said. “It’s kind of a landmark event for Brattleboro. Brattleboro really identifies with it and it really comes out to support it. I’m glad that we’re still going to be able to pull it off despite the uncooperative weather and continue the tradition.”

While the event itself is taking place on Saturday and Sunday, with gates opening at 10 a.m. for tailgating and parking and the jumping beginning at noon both days, there are some aspects of the competition that have been cancelled this year.

Originally, target jumping was going to take place on Friday night under the lights that were installed on the jump last year. It would have been the first time that a portion of the competition would have taken place in the evening. But that part of the competition was cancelled due to the weather and the concern that there would not be enough artificial snow produced for the event on Friday, the Pepsi Challenge & US Cup on Saturday, and the Fred Harris Memorial Tournament on Sunday.

The Nordic combined event, which included ski jumping and a 10K cross-country ski race that was set to be held at Marlboro Nordic Ski Club, was also cancelled due to the lack of snow resulting from recent warm weather conditions.

“We weren’t able to guarantee that we could have it,” said Knickerbocker. “It’s a bummer for sure. It was an exciting component of the weekend for the Marlboro Nordic Ski Club to be able to host, especially since they made a really big investment in the trail network out there, but in terms of the overall event I think it’s a really small piece. Probably the biggest impact is for the athletes that would have been competing in that for US Cup points.”

In addition to the event being significant for the jumpers and members of the community, it is also important from a commerce standpoint. The Brattleboro Holiday Inn Express & Suites is the official lodging partner for the ski jump and is always fully booked for the event. Other local lodging, eateries, popular tourist stops and businesses are ready for an influx of visitors to town. David Hiler, co-owner and co-founder of Whetstone Craft Beers, likens the ski jump to “our own small version of the Olympics.”

The crowd that usually attends the jump is large, with somewhere between 2,000 to 3,000 people attending each day, Todd Einig said.

“Everybody comes to the jump ... they go out to breakfast before it (and) they go out to the bar and to eat dinner afterwards,” said Einig.