Readers of SNEWSÂ® will recall that longtime sales rep, Stevie Sidener, took a catastrophic 35-foot fall from a ladder in July 2004. While the initial impact didn't kill him, he nearly died a week later from complications. Sidener's recovery from numerous brain surgeries and operations on both wrists has been simply amazing, but is still ongoing. And, as he told us recently, "I have insurance co-payments like you wouldn't believe."
Thanks to encouragement from industry leaders such as Steve Crissafulli, the outdoor industry rallied behind Sidener with initial donations toward his recovery expenses totaling $50,000.
Mike Hattrup, the head of K2 Telemark, recognized that Sidener was well known at all the outdoor shops and ski resorts in the Rockies and many would like to help out more. But Hattrup, who once worked in the trenches, also knew that shop employees and ski professionals don't have much in the way of disposable income. So he came up with an innovative win-win solution for additional fund-raising that garnered the approval of K2 management.
Over the past year, K2 and rep agency Alpin Sales ran a promo that designated a $50 donation by K2 to the Stevie Sidener Charitable Trust for every pro deal order received from the Rockies region. For participants this was a no-brainer -- get a great deal on new skis and help a friend out at the same time. K2 reported that it sold 273 pairs of skis through the pro deal promotion, 54 percent more pro deals orders than were placed in the previous season. Sunday night at a dinner with the Alpin Sales team and one of our SNEWSÂ® reporters, Hattrup presented Sidener with a check for $13,650.
But Hattrup did one better. Working with the K2 telemark ski production manager in China, he had a pair of AntiPistes (K2's new fat telemark ski) made that features the names of all 273 sales and resort staff who helped raise the $13,650 as a part of the ski's graphics. While he won't be skiing much this season, and this pair will never touch snow, Sidener, who has an extensive ski collection, told us that the special makeup AntiPistes will certainly be his most valued pair. He added that he's extremely grateful for all who have helped contribute to his recovery.