The American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation announced Monday, Jan. 6, that registration for the 2020 Slumberland American Birkebeiner (Birkie) 50K Skate & 55K Classic races will close at 11:59 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 9.
The Slumberland American Birkebeiner is North America’s largest and most prestigious cross-country ski race. On Saturday, Feb. 22, skiers will make their way down the Birkie Trail from Cable to Hayward, where they’ll finish on the snow-covered Main Street.
An estimated 13,500 skiers will participate in Birkie week races Feb. 20-22, with an anticipated 35,000 spectators cheering them on.
The American Birkebeiner is rooted in the Norwegian historical account of two Birkebeiner warriors, so-called by the birch bark leggings they wore, who skied 2-year-old Prince Haakon, heir to the Norwegian throne, to safety on a long and perilous journey through the treacherous mountains and forests of Norway. Their determination is commemorated each year at the American Birkebeiner Ski Marathon as skiers recreate the courageous 55-kilometer journey.
Slumberland Furniture is the title sponsor of the 46th Slumberland American Birkebeiner ski race.