By Cassidee Cline
Photos by Whitney Petersen
Skis and snowboards were abused on trick rails set up on the USU Quad Tuesday to promote Entrepreneur Week.
E-Club President Paul Rossiter said the group partnered with ASUSU and others to bring the Rail Jam Tour to USU.
“We are trying to get people stoked,” Rossiter said. “It’s a way to promote Entrepreneur Week to the school.”
Students were drawn to the snow-covered ramp, constructed on the Quad just west of the business building, by loud music and cheering as contestants showed off their skills on their snowboards or skis.
Monster provided free energy drinks, and spectators could win free services and phones from Cricket. Entrepreneurs from around the valley promotes their businesses, and Big Blue, USUs well-known superstar mascot, strapped on a snowboard and braved the rails.
Keenan Jones helps with the tour. “I think it’s a good fit,” he said, “since Dan and Ryan are entrepreneurs themselves.” Dan Genco and Ryan Kirkpatrick, from Oregon State University, started the Rail Jam Tour in 2005.
“It’s their way of showing people that anyone can do anything if they want to,” Jones said.
The event promotes amateur skiers and snowboarders while getting people outdoors and having fun, Jones said.
Rail Jam includes a snowboarding preliminary round, skiing preliminary round and then finals for the top 10 skiers and snowboarders. “It’s a way for them to get their name out there,” Jones said.
“I think it helps get a lot of people out here,” he said. “There are a lot of good riders and it’s a lot of fun.”
He said the $25 to participate and get free stuff made it even better.
The Rail Jam “set” is a scaffolding structure with snow-covered ramps rails that allow participants to do a variety of tricks.
Competitors all wore helmets, and EMTs and ambulances were standing by in case of serious wipe-outs. Large airbags lined both sides of the ramp in case of falls off-course.
Rossiter said this is the entrepreneur club’s second year hosting an Entrepreneur Week, and that their main goal is to make people aware that being an entrepreneur isn’t just for business students.
All students are encouraged to come, and check out the club, which has many resources on entrepreneurship available.