| Home | Economy | 2024-07-09

Mt Buller Celebrates 100 Year Milestone With 100 Skiers

Mt Buller was buzzing Sat 6 July, with sunshine, snow and smiles as the community celebrated 100 years since skiing began on its snow-covered slopes in 1924.

On a winter Sunday in July 1924 members of the newly formed The Ski Club of Victoria (SCV) pioneered skiing on Mt Buller. A posse of 7 SCV members embarked on that first weekend ski mission from Melbourne a century ago and after a drive, horseback ride and hike they made history sliding on skis down Mt Buller – something thousands of Melburnians now enjoy daily each snow season.

Mt Buller sparkled for the special anniversary from the cloud-less sunrise, first lifts at 8.30am and through until 9pm with skiing under lights as the resort marked the centenary on and off the slopes.

The highlight was a mesmerizing torch lit descent on Bourke Street when the lights turned off and members of the Ski Club of Victoria, led by club President Christian Munn carried 100 brightly lit torches in a glowing line from top to bottom on the Bourke Street run. As the run twinkled in the torchlights the clear sky above filled with fireworks and the whole resort stopped to take in the amazing display.

Ski Club of Victoria’s current and 32nd President Christian Munn was delighted,
“Tonight, we celebrated as a community, honouring the triumphs of our pioneers and fellow club members who paved the way for the sport we love. Let’s make them proud in the next 100 years.” Christian has been a member of the SCV since he was five years old.

“I started skiing here at around the age of 4, I now ski here with my son, I skied here with my Dad and I hope to ski here with my grandchildren. When you think about what the SCV has achieved - the first people to build a lodge up here, the first people to have a ski lift, started the ski patrol - we’re celebrating all those institutions and people here tonight.”

Ski Club members involved in the torch run included former President Ray Lopez, a life member of the Club chalking up 66 years of membership this year, Sami Italia and Ron Cracknell (75) who both race each week in the Super Veteran division with SCV, former President James Souter with his daughter Katherine, mother and daughter ski racers Susie and Emma Wellborne as well as many SCV families including the Sallabanks, Lyons, Meissers, Taylors, Roches and Buttons.

Buller Ski Lifts General Manager Noel Landry was in the midst of the gathering on the Bourke Street run,
“As much as skiing and Mt Buller has changed in the past 100 years the reasons for us being here tonight is very much the same. Skiing is not just a sport, it’s an industry and it’s also a community. The act of sliding on snow has this extraordinary ability to build connections and be shared and passed on through generations. I ski because my Dad got me started, I met my wife on a chairlift and my son is now teaching kids to ski too.”

Alpine Resorts Victoria Chief Operating Officer Alan Arthur reflected on the SCV achievement,
“What started with seven people in 1924 is now a vital part of Victoria’s tourism industry, with our alpine resorts contributing $2.14 billion to Victoria’s annual economic activity. Generations of families have worked on Mt Buller and across our alpine resorts, and today our industry supports more than 12,000 regional jobs.  Alpine Resorts Victoria is proud to be the custodian of Mt Buller, and we look forward to continuing to welcome guests and supporting the regional economy as we enter our second centenary of skiing on our beautiful mountain.”

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