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Remembering Reijo Puiras
By:  team xc ottawa   (2017/08/09)


XC Ottawa is saddened by the loss of Reijo Puiras, a national cross country ski legend and founder of the Lappe Nordic Ski Center.

Many XC Ottawa athletes experienced first-hand Reijo’s warm-hearted spirit, generosity, animated storytelling, and unwavering passion for his family, cross country skiing, fun race courses, and a perfectly groomed ski trail.  We’d like to express our sincere appreciation for Reijo’s friendship, dedication, and contributions to Canadian cross-country skiing.

Reijo’s personal efforts, experiences and accomplishments as a Canadian athlete in the relatively obscure endeavor of cross-country ski racing  appear to have set the stage for a lifetime of unwavering commitment to our favorite sport.

As racers we look back at his superhuman efforts to put on supremely well-organized races that attracted the best skiers from across North America to a facility that began as a backyard ski trail. We selfishly hope that the traditions Reijo established will hold strong.

As one-time members of NTDC Thunder Bay, we consider ourselves extremely lucky to have enjoyed the years of training, skiing, and racing at Lappe and all that came with them – like kilometer after kilometer of perfect trails, hot saunas, and pancakes with strawberry sauce.

As friends we thank him for the useful advice and encouragement, the mischievous winks, the colorful anecdotes, and the repeated invitations (never declined) to Two Island Lake for saunas, swims, and hamburgers.

Finally, we salute an extremely proud father and grandfather and send his family and many friends all the best wishes.

Though sadly Reijo is gone, his tremendous contributions to cross country skiing in Canada, and especially at Lappe Nordic Ski Center, live on: his trails give joy to so many every day and will for years to come.   

More about Reijo . . .


The Passing of a Ski Legend (Cross Country Ski Ontario)

Interview with Reijo Puiras (Karl Saidla)

Interesting Reading. . .
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