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Get ready for winter: Ski and Sports Swap is Saturday

What do and “SNIGRAB,” snowboards, socks, scones and scholarships all have in common?

These are all a part of the annual Ski and Sports Swap, sponsored by the San Juan Outdoor Club, that will be held this Saturday, Oct. 24, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Ross Aragon Community Center.

A large sporting goods business in the Denver area started its “SNIGRAB” event more than two decades ago. If you look carefully, this word is “BARGAINS” spelled backwards.

Bargains will be the order of the day at the Saturday event here in Pagosa Springs. Outdoors enthusiasts will find every conceivable kind of winter sports equipment, at some amazingly low prices.

There will be downhill and cross country skis, boots and poles. There will be snowboards, snowshoes, ice skates, sleds and toboggans. Head-to-toe warm clothing will be available, from hats to socks, from mittens to snow boots, and parkas to pants.

Among all the winter equipment you will also be able to find bargains on bicycles and a variety of other gear for year around sporting activities

Warm, delicious, homemade scones will be only one of many offerings at the bake sale and “cafe.” SJOC members have been busy in the kitchen making a variety of food items for you to enjoy. You can have breakfast burritos, muffins or cookies with a beverage, and frito/chili pie if you are shopping after 11 a.m. Or you can choose to take a plate of goodies home with you to eat at a later time.

Many individuals will be consigning items for sale. If you would like to take advantage of this opportunity, bring your gear to the community center between 5:30 and 6:30 p.m. Friday evening or between 7:30 and 8:30 a.m. Saturday morning. Year-round equipment is welcomed.

Here is a word of caution however. The club will not be accepting “straight” downhill skis or exercise machines at the event.

The Outdoor Club keeps a commission of 17 percent and the rest of the money is yours. This is a great way to get some extra cash for buying new equipment for yourself at the sale, if you so choose.

A number of local and Four Corners area merchants will be selling items on this same consignment basis. These businesses include Alpen Haus Ski Center, Bubba’s Boards, Gold Medal Sports, Inferno Snowboard Company, New Mexico Board & Ski, Pagosa Ski Rental, Pedal & Powder, RM Gear, Ski Barn, and Switchback Mountain Gear.

What does the club do with the proceeds from this sale? This is where “SCHOLARSHIP” comes in. Each year, for at least the past 10 years, the San Juan Outdoor Club has been able to give scholarships to graduating Pagosa seniors. This past year, four scholarships in the amount of $1,000 were awarded. It has been very gratifying to club members to hear about the successes of the students they have been able to help financially with their educations.

The 17-percent commission kept by the club is the major way money is raised for the scholarships. The group also raises money through its silent auction at the annual club July 4 picnic, and at raffles and drawings at monthly meetings.

This is a winning event for everyone. You get a chance to find quality sports equipment at reasonable prices. You can have a delicious snack or meal. You can earn some money for yourself while helping deserving local students.

Be at the community center from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. this Saturday.