Rocky Mountain Ski Racing club achieves public charity status |

Rocky Mountain Ski Racing club achieves public charity status

Rocky Mountain Ski Racing, a first year Summit County-based Alpine ski racing club, was represented in March at the U.S. Alpine speed and tech national championships in Maine and New Hampshire. Making the trip were three club members pictured in this photo: Coach Crawford Pierce (right) and skiers Abigail Murer (center) and Camryn Glick.
Courtesy John McMurtry

The Summit County-based Rocky Mountain Ski Racing Alpine club is now a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit organization.

Club founder and National and Colorado Ski Hall of Fame inductee John McMurtry, of Silverthorne, said the designation is huge for the club considering its goal to reduce the cost of Alpine skiing for the youth skiers it serves.

McMurtry said the designation effectively means the club can now accept tax-deductible donations. In turn, he said the club’s vision is to have philanthropic support fund program development, scholarships and operations.

“This is important and critical for the kinds of programs we envisioned eight months ago,” McMurtry said. “We are 8 months old, and I think it’s remarkable we were able to achieve this right off the bat. We are trying to become a community charity to support youth in sports and through the medium of ski racing.

“We are finding more and more, because of the cost of the sport, it’s not as accessible any longer,” McMurtry said. “We want to find a way to make it affordable and give people an opportunity.”

McMurtry emphasized he is a firm believer of the importance sports play in helping young people grow up, but he’s concerned it’s getting out of reach financially for many. McMurtry founded the club, which serves skiers 14 and older, in September 2018 along with former U.S. Ski Team coach Crawford Pierce. This past season, the club had several athletes qualify for national competitions.

“It really is going to hinge on community support,” McMurtry said. “And we are, because of this designation from the IRS, we are a public charity, and we are serving the greater good. It depends really how much we can raise. But if … we can reduce that to where a child is starting out paying $200 to 300 bucks for a season, that’d be terrific. As you get up into the more elite levels, the expenses are just tremendous.”

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