Splash into spring

Tom Jegen hits the water dressed as the statue of Liberty in Saturday’s pond skimming contest at Whiteface Mountain. The 45-year-old won the best costume award in this year’s event. (Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)

WILMINGTON — The Whiteface Mountain Ski Center hosted its annual International Pond Skimming Contest on Saturday, and despite the lack of sunny blue skies, a field of nearly 100 participants showed up to entertain the large crowd of spectators that gathered at the base of the slopes for the event.

Men, women and youngsters on skis and snowboards decked out in an array of costumes braved the chilly waters as they attempted to skim their way across the man-made pond at the bottom of the Bear trail in front of the smiling, encouraging crowd that lined both sides of the course.

Among the prizes awarded were for best costume, best splash, flips and of course, the longest skims on a day when the in-run was sticky, which accounted for only two competitors making it all the way across the pond.

Tim Horstmyer took top honors for distance, with the 21-year-old skier staying dry while skimming across the entire length of the pond. Steven Ronald won longest distance in the snowboard category.

Dressed in a gorilla costume, Mike Perruccio won the best flip, Keith Ryan took second and Greg Reiss won third place. In the best splash contest, Kyle Mathiew was first, Kevin Munn was runner-up and Nathan Jenkins claimed third place.

Seven-year-old Laina Ronald wraps her arms around her blow-up unicorn while skiing into the water during Saturday’s pond skimming contest at Whiteface Mountain. (Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)

Lura Johnson was the winner in the women’s costume contest. Johnson was dressed as a waitress carrying a tray, which she managed to keep dry. Ann Watts placed second and 12-year-old Elise McCleneghan placed third dressed as Raggedy Ann.

Kids awards winners included Sofia Gillian for her jumping giraffe costume, Wyatt Stanclift for distance and Olivia Mero for her stylish fall.

A first-time award went to Trevor Symonds and Mike Hendry, who splashed into the pond together dressed as members of Motley Crue’s road crew.

The Ronald clan of Steven, Levi, Liaina and Sabina Ronald teamed up to win the family award.

Dressed as the statue of Liberty, Tom Jegan walked away from the competition with a a new set of Rossignol skis as the winner of the pond skimming’s best costume award.

Jon Bigness of Fort Covington delights the crowd as he takes flight before splashing down in the chilly water in Saturday’s pond skimming contest. (Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)

Lura Johnson of Keene skims across the water dressed as waitress during Saturday’s annual International Pond Skimming contest at Whiteface Mountain Ski Center in Wilmington. She took top honors in the women’s category for the best costume. (Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)

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