- Associated Press - Wednesday, September 16, 2015

PLYMOUTH, N.H. (AP) - A community is scrambling after an engineer deemed a popular high school ski jump in New Hampshire unsafe.

WMUR-TV reports (https://bit.ly/1igvFdN ) the Pemi-Baker school board held a special meeting Tuesday night now that a 35-year-old ski jump at Plymouth Regional High School is off-limits and covered in warnings.

A Facebook page called “Save Our Ski Jump” was created after the possibility arose that the structure could be torn down. Volunteers built the jump for $1,200 in 1979 and tried to make it easily maintainable by putting replaceable poles on the outside of the structure.

New Hampshire is the only state that still offers competitive ski jumping as a high school sport and seven schools participate. It doesn’t get the same financial support as some of the glamour sports, so it relies heavily on volunteers who donate time, money and effort to maintain jumps around the state.

In the middle of the 20th century, New Hampshire was the center of the nation’s ski jumping community, hosting Olympic tryouts, World Cup competitions and national championships at the Nansen Ski Jump in the North Country. Two current members of the U.S. team, Nick Fairall and Nicholas Alexander, are from New Hampshire.

Already, other teams are rallying to support Plymouth. The Mt. Sunapee Area Ski Club says it would donate $1,000 to the project.

“If they tear the jump down, the kids will have to travel to probably Proctor Academy. Our concern is that’s an hour-and-a-half drive. Might lose a couple kids this year, couple kids next year, and next thing you know there’s no more team,” Skip Johnstone told WMUR. He organized the Facebook group.

Jumpers are hoping there’s a way to save the Plymouth jump.

“It’s definitely my favorite jump in the state,” Plymouth senior Chris Ebner said. “I wasn’t happy when they said they might take it down.”


Information from: WMUR-TV, https://wmur.com

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