News & Stories

Northside Combined High School Ski Team Continues to Grow

Northside Combined captain Teagan Brogdon can’t remember the last time 15 students from North Minneapolis were at ski practice.

“Last year,” he said, “we averaged about 5 skiers per practice. There’s much more interest this year. It’s exciting. And there are many more 9th graders on the team.”

He said this in a busy gym, sweating from his workout. There were shouts of encouragement all around him. “Come on, one more pull up!” “5 more pounds.” “30 more seconds. Hold that plank!” There were high fives and tips on form.

Everyone was asking for more, and, the thing was, everyone got more. It’s hard to argue with him — this kind of atmosphere is exciting.

Next year, Teagan will be going to Concordia College in Moorhead, MN. He plans to start that school’s first ski club — following in the footsteps (or rather, in the classic track) of Patrick Henry Ski Team founder and current North Park University freshman, Joe Clifton.

This team invites invention. They teach me new things everyday about the meaning of hard work and giving back to the community where you’re from. The team recently volunteered at Holiday on 44th. I was struck at the number of people in the crowd the team knew. Cousins, friends, classmates — it was incredible to see people of different backgrounds coming together and celebrating where we are from.

In a big way, Northside Combined in a celebration of where we are from. We welcome people of all backgrounds and tell them, “yes, you are a skier!” We practice at Theodore Wirth, taking the 7 down Penn and the 32 from Lowry to get here. We know all the secret spots: Tornado Alley, the Challenge Course, Twin Lake. We hand out shirts at Holiday on 44th and wheel out Northside youth’s first-ever bikes at a give-away in the Lucy Lane gym.

We are still chomping at the bit to get out on snow and our fingers are crossed and we are knocking on all the wood we can find that we get to race on snow au naturale this year (we’re still packing a lot of red wax, just in case). But, at least we have the wonderful community that is North Minneapolis. At least we have a team that helps each other and is a place of growth and strength for everyone on the team. And, if all else fails, we can become professional snow dancers. We have a lot of practice already.

You know where we’ve been — Theo Wirth, up to Camden, across the river to Northeast and back on Plymouth — and here we are going to stay and set down our roots; a ski team from the Northside, for the Northside.

So, if you see a whole bunch of rollerskiers who joke around as they V2 around the Parkway or run around Camden to warm up for strength training, just think what we’ve already been thinking.

Well, they’re here.

Yes. We’re here. And we’re here to stay.

Northside Combined Nordic Ski Team Information »