In addition to the four impressive honorees who will be inducted into the International Snowmobile Hall of Fame (ISHOF) in September, the ISHOF organization will also honor four specialty award winners again this year.
An impressive snowmobile club, a dedicated dealership, a committed groomer operator and an enthusiastic snowmobiling ambassador are being singled out for their dedication to the sport. Below is the press release from ISHOF – congratulations to all, and thanks for all you do for the great sport of snowmobiling!
2022 International Snowmobile Club of the Year: Rome Sno-Bandits of Rome, Wisconsin
Sponsored by Woody’s, Midwest Chapter, American Council of Snowmobile Associations & International Snowmobile Council
The Rome Sno-Bandits always have fun in everything they do, no matter if they are working on trails or enjoying a club ride. They are a small-town, community-based club that supports local businesses and the surrounding area. Located in northern Adams County, Wisconsin, the Sno-Bandits are dedicated to providing the finest trails for recreational family snowmobiling in their area.
The Rome Sno-Bandits started in the late 1960s when about eight couples from the Rome area decided to form a club. As the sport grew so did the Sno-Bandits. Today, they are 200 members strong and together they maintain 35 miles of snowmobile trails. They have two grooming units to keep the trails in tip-top shape. The Sno-Bandits host a club ride each Wednesday and Saturday. They also plan an annual club trip to various locations in northern Wisconsin. The Sno-Bandits are continually active year-round.
After every May and October meeting, members participate in the Wisconsin DOT Adopt-A-Highway program by picking up trash along Highway 13. Every November they have their annual trail brushing, signing and chili dump. Starting early in the morning members will split up in groups to brush and place signs on their trail system. By mid-afternoon they meet back at the groomer shed to enjoy the chili and conduct their November meeting.
Every December the Sno-Bandits participate in the “Christmas in Rome” event where trees are decorated throughout the town, hayrides are offered and kids young and old are greeted by a visit from Santa. During Father’s Day weekend (since 2001) they hold their Classic Car, Motorcycle and Snowmobile Show, considered the club’s largest fundraiser. It is this club’s devotion to the small town of Rome and surrounding area that makes it our pleasure to designate the Rome Sno-Bandits as the International Snowmobile Club of the Year for 2022.
2022 International Snowmobile Dealer of the Year – Track Side of Eagle River, Wisconsin
Sponsored by Snow Goer, Midwest Chapter, American Council of Snowmobile Associations & International Snowmobile Council
A snowmobile dealership named Track Side can hardly be known by any other name when considering its geographic location – only a few hundred feet from the start/finish line of the famed World Championship Derby Track.
Under new management in 2018 with owner Chris Petreikis, Track Side is committed to being involved in organized snowmobiling. Although always vigilant of the racing history and the obvious “Win on Sunday…Sell on Monday” mentality, Track Side has always devoted significant support toward the local clubs and the trail system in Vilas and surrounding counties as well as Upper Michigan.
Without hesitation, Track Side participates in the yearly “Groom to Ride” fundraising raffle. They donate the grand prize snowmobile, provide their showroom area for tickets sales and host the drawing. The proceeds earned during this raffle support three clubs’ grooming efforts nearest to Eagle River.
A major sponsor on the state and national level, Track Side has played a key role sponsoring VIP Rides and sleds for state legislators, DNR officials, tourism personnel and snowmobile clubs throughout Wisconsin. Track Side has donated most of its rental fleet in support of the Military Appreciation Ride held annually the Monday after Derby Week.
All snowmobile clubs responsible for maintaining trails in or near Vilas County can count on Track Side for fundraising merchandise and sponsorship help with trail expenses. A dealership this committed to organized snowmobiling makes Track Side a deserving choice for the 2022 International Snowmobile Dealer of the Year. (EDITOR’S NOTE: The Rome Sno-Badits were also recognized in Snow Goer magazine in our snowmobile club profile section in the last couple of years. Click through to see it.)
2022 International Groomer of the Year – Bob Keller of LaPine, Oregon
Sponsored by Arrowhead Groomers, Track Inc., Pisten Bully, Prinoth, Ltd. and SnoBoss Groomers
Over the past two decades Bob has volunteered countless hours grooming the 150+ miles of trails in the Newberry National Volcanic Monument located in Deschutes National Forest in Oregon. Bob has worked closely with the park service establishing and managing the snowmobile trail system in and around the Newberry Crater.
Bob schedules, grooms, manages and maintains a grooming program that ensures his trails are free from hazards and always freshly groomed for club rides and key community events. Bob’s track record of safety and readiness has been unmatched over the years and has resulted in a trail riding experience that thousands of snowmobile riders enjoy every winter.
Bob always makes a point to spend ample time with his groomer operators to provide positive feedback. He and his team keep the trails in outstanding condition throughout the winter season. It has been this way consistently for close to two decades. His humble expertise and outstanding people skills have resulted in numerous groomer operators being trained on various grooming equipment. Bob’s ability to instruct while building driver confidence is among his best attributes.
Bob and his team are always willing to do whatever it takes to keep the trails in the Newberry National Volcanic Monument ready for snowmobilers’ riding pleasure seven days a week. It is this unwavering dedication that makes Bob Keller an excellent choice for the 2022 International Snowmobile Groomer of the Year Award. (EDITORS NOTE: Keller’s work was also recognized by a TV station in his area. Click through to see the story they created.)
2022 Edgar Hetteen Memorial Award of Merit – Bill McFarlane of Franconia, New Hampshire
Sponsored by Elmer Cone Family and the Iron Dog Brigade
Bill started snowmobiling in 1981 with Tug Hill, New York, as his first destination on a Moto-Ski Mirage. Three years later he and his wife, Jule Dele, made their first trip to the Saguenay Region in Quebec. That’s when they became the first American members of the Saguenay Snowmobile Club, in which they have been active ever since.
Bill and Jule’s main residence is New Hampshire but they spend most of the snowmobile riding season at the Delta Saguenay Hotel in Jonquiere. His personal love for snowmobiling coupled with his outgoing personality made him a champion of active promotion of this sport for more than 30 years. After he gets his own day of riding in, you will find “Saguenay Bill” in the lobby of the Delta Hotel sharing valuable trail riding information with any and all touring snowmobilers who stop in.
Bill keeps up on the latest trail developments such as grooming updates, weather, restaurant recommendations, fuel and dealer locations. When he gets a break from personal contact with guests at the hotel, he is busy returning phone calls, answering emails and posting on social media, all in an effort to insure folks riding in the Saguenay Region have the safest and best snowmobile riding experience possible.
In 2019 the Saguenay Snowmobile Club and local tourism group renamed a 65 kilometer trail the “Bill Trail” after “Saguenay Bill” for his contributions to the region. Bill’s in-depth knowledge and willingness to share makes him the ultimate ambassador of snowmobiling and most deserving of the 2022 Edgar Hetteen Memorial Award of Merit.
Join us for ISHOF Induction Weekend in Eagle River, Wisconsin on September 16-17, 2022
We invite you to honor the Class of 2022 and Special Award Recipients with a Banquet and Induction Ceremony in their honor. The International Snowmobile Hall of Fame (ISHOF) Induction Ceremony Weekend celebrates and honors those involved in the sport of Snowmobiling; recognizing a NEW class being inducted into the Hall.
Join the celebration: We invite all industry representatives, dealership personnel, club members, motorsports enthusiasts, friends, fans and supporters alike to attend the ISHOF annual special event weekend. You can join this year’s ISHOF Induction Weekend with fun activities in Eagle River, Wisconsin. The festivities begin on Friday September 16, 2022, with a Fish and Chicken Buffet and special award presentations for Groomer, Club and Dealer awards. Saturday there will be a formal NY Strip or Chicken Dinner to officially honor the Class of 2022 as they’re inducted into the Hall on September 17, 2022. Both the Friday and Saturday meals will be at Eagle Waters Resort, 3958 Eagle Waters Road, Eagle River, Wisconsin. Saturday event is a semi-formal affair so please dress accordingly for the event.
Show your support for the newly inducted Hall of Fame Class of 2022 and all special award recipients by registering online www.ishof.com to attend. All major credit cards are accepted for secure online payment with immediate receipt and event information provided to you via e-mail with your paid registration. NOTE: Registration is required for all guests and supporters to attend. Registrations closes on September 6, 2022.