Nordic Night Fever


An evening of sharing ideas as we prep for the Birkie
6:00 - 8:00 P.M.
Feb. 9th 
at Gear West 

Featuring a panel of Birkie veteran skiers 
Birkie wax demos, Beer and Food,

Clear your calendar for this event 

Reserve Your Space on Facebook

Fluoros with Fox 
Matt Fox Demonstrates 
how to pick the right glide wax based on snow conditions
and how to apply HF waxes and Pure Fluoros
(without burning your bases)

Talk Birkie and enjoy a nice beer
Get your beer in a logoed pint glass
When you make a small donation to 
Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Sports and Recreation Institute
Announcing the Panel


Ben Popp

Executive Director of the American Birkebeiner

We are thrilled to have Elite athlete and Birkie top-dog, Ben Popp, on our panel.

Originally from northern Wisconsin, Ben has been involved in American Birkebeiner events since the late 1970s.  Born and raised in Phillips Wisconsin, Ben attended St. Olaf College as an undergraduate, and then received his Masters in Education from St. Thomas University in St. Paul MN.   Ben has coached Nordic skiing and soccer at Carleton College, St. Marys University.  Ben has owned and operated Endurance Athlete Training Systems, as well as started the non-profit SISU Foundation before starting work at the ABSF.   “Having grown up participating in North America’s greatest ski race, I’m honored to be part of the ABSF team and continue the tradition of excellence, hosting quality events and getting people involved in an outdoor lifestyle.  My family and I love being a part of the Northwoods community.”




Lynne Cecil

Birkie Champ a while ago - and still amazing

Lynne was raised in the bike and ski business as her parents owned BJ's Bike & Ski, a top notch nordic racing store with Brian Knutson as the ski manager. She started nordic skiing after moving back to Minnesota from Crested Butte, CO after college. Lynne is something of a rarity in the xc skiing world - she started roller skiing and fell in love with it before she'd ever even been on skinny skis. She didn't even believe that skiing on snow could possibly be more fun than roller skiing!


Fortunately, Lynne's start to skiing also coincided with the explosion of the skate technique; the newly leveled playing field being allowed her to excel in the sport, racing for the Fischer/Salomon Factory team in its' heyday and culminating with a victory in the 1990 Birkie.


Lynne has 3 daughters who have grown up too quickly, she enjoys sharing her passion for skiing with new skiers both through her position at Gear West and as a coach for LNR and Life Time Fitness. Lynne's newest passion is yoga in all its forms because of the physical challenge and body/mind/soul connection.


Andrew Poffenberger

Executive Director of Endurance United

Andrew worked for Central Region Cross Country Ski Association (CXC). He graduated from and skied for Gustavus Adolphus College, and prior to that for Stillwater High School.


Andrew is an accomplished ski coach and manager. Andrew very recently was head coach of the CXC Para Team, working with athletes with physical disabilities and visual impairments. He has held leadership and coaching positions in the various ski teams and organization of which he has been part—Midwest U16 NENSA trip, Sports Manager for CXC, Head Coach Lakeville South Nordic Ski Team. 




Jan Guenther

Elite athlete and Owner of Gear West
Already a successful store owner and decorated athlete in both nordic skiing and triathlon, Jan moved to Minnesota and founded Gear West in 1991. Although it started small, a commitment to excellent customer service, world cup level ski fit, and competitive pricing provided a bedrock for what is now the largest cross country ski retailer in the United States. Today, Jan still integrates herself into every aspect of the business, ensuring that everything is held to the same high standards that Gear West was started at.


In Jan's free time she tries really hard to be the best mom she can to two boys, Anders and Connor. The rest of her free time Jan devotes to XC skiing, running, triathlons, paddling and taking care of her dogs. And if there is any more free time, Jan uses it to bake cookies instead of completing household duties. Jan won the Mora Vassaloppet five times and finished second Women overall in the American Birkebeiner.


Jordan Roby
Sports Chiropractor and Elite athlete

Dr. Jordan Roby is an elite triathlete, runner, and endurance athlete. He learned to XC ski just over 3 years ago and is now participating in wave 1 at his 3rd Birkie this year. Dr. Roby works as a Sports Chiropractor and owner at Peak Performance Chiropractic where he focuses on injury rehabilitation/prevention and nutrition for endurance athletes.


He has enjoyed his journey in learning new endurance related sports and attributes much of his continued success in his triathlon and running because of cross-training through winter XC skiing. 




Brenda Gauvin-Chadwick
Skied Multiple Marathons all around the world

I am a long time citizen ski racer (over 30 years) both skate and classic. Now I primarily race classic because I am lazy. I usually ski between 4-6 marathons a season. I have skied both the Norwegian Birkie, and the Swedish Vasaloppet (90k) many times. I love skiing and all the challenges it presents from how to change in the porta potty to getting the kick wax right. My challenge this year is getting back in shape and gaining my weight back after a big surgical procedure, so I can ski the Inga Lami in Norway this March.