Water damage speeding up Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame renovations

The U.S. Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame has been periodically scheduling exterior and interior renovations for the past few years, but water damage is forcing the facility managers to expedite their plans.

The hall’s 20,000-square-foot space houses an extensive collection of ski artifacts and archives. The water leak has not damaged any of the 375 displays of trophies, clothing, equipment and honored members. While the damage is unfortunate, it only builds the resolve of the museum officials to get the construction underway.

“The idea always was that the Hall of Fame would be a gateway to Ishpeming and to Marquette County for those coming down US-41,” Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame CEO Tom West said. “With the new roundabout coming in, being scheduled for 2016, this just enhances our efforts even more. If we respond appropriately and I think we are, we can achieve our goals of enhancing the attractiveness of our building.”

The building’s architecture represents both the nordic and alpine skiing traditions. Museum officials are applying for state and local grants, besides holding a few fundraisers of their own.

“The campus itself, as you look at it, we plan to add some ski sculptures, flower gardens, they will just catch people’s eye, even creating some active ski displays,” West said.

Admission to the museum is free, although donations are accepted. It’s open six days a week and is closed on Sundays.