The Visit Eau Claire Sports Commission teamed up with the Chippewa Off Road Bike Association to bid for the championships against four other destinations. The United States Snowshoe Association, comprised of 19 voting members, is the association designated to select a host each year for the event. The selection of Eau Claire was formally announced at the 2014 championships, which were held in Woodford, Vermont. The championship event rotates between four different regions and 2015 is the North Central Region's turn to host the event.
CORBA has proven itself as a successful host to several non-traditional sporting events as the group annually hosts the Red Flint Firecracker and the Powder Keg Snowshoe Race. The Red Flint Firecracker, consisting of mountain bike races and a trail run, will be in its 10th year of existence in 2014 while the Powder Keg just recently completed its fourth year. The Powder Keg, which also included fat-bike races, totaled 170 participants in 2014.
"CORBA is extremely excited to be picked to host this event," CORBA member Jereme Rauckman said. "We get to show off Eau Claire and highlight some of the beautiful trails built and maintained by CORBA's amazing volunteers. This is also an opportunity to introduce more people to the sport of snowshoeing and one more way to stay fit and enjoy the outdoors during the winter. The snow and the cold tend to last a while in this part of the country. Rather than coop yourself up inside until Spring, why not get outside and embrace it?"
The snowshoe championships, which, prior to Vermont, have been held in locations such as Bend, Ore. (2013), Frisco, Colo (2012), and Cable, Wis. (2011), are comprised of Junior National 5km championships, Senior Men's and Women's 10km championships, Kid's Kilo Run/Walk, Citizens' 5km Run/Walk, and a 4x2.5km Snowshoe Team Relay event. The 2014 National Championship event in Vermont on Feb. 28 - March 2 drew over 400 athletes while the 2015 event has an estimated economic impact of $135,000 for the city of Eau Claire.
Visit Eau Claire effectively markets the Eau Claire area as a destination for conventions, group tour, sporting events, and leisure markets; to promote regional economic growth; to enhance the area's overall identity and image; to sell fun, promote fun, and most importantly - Have FUN!