“Winterdance” …says it all!

While sitting at gymnastics practice, I chatted with another mom who happened to be from Anchorage. I told her about my girls’ upcoming Iditarod adventure and I jokingly asked her if she had any idea about attire for the pre-race musher’s banquet. She quipped that “black-tie” affairs simply don’t exist in Alaska, but she wasn’t sure what to suggest because the Iditarod banquet was indeed a big deal. Shortly after she left, I dug out a book that our pastor suggested about dog mushing and the race. I had already read half of the book and laughed throughout Gary Paulsen’s hilarious descriptions of dog-mushing mishaps – *relating to many of them! Ironically, on the day I joked about the musher’s banquet, I came to the chapter in the book called, “Pre-Race” – an in-depth description of the event… which made me actually say out loud, “Oh Lord, what in the world we’re getting our girls into!”
Excerpt from the book, “Winterdance”:
“In my life I have been to many banquets but the one in Anchorage before the race takes all honors for both quality and length. Attending the pre-race banquet is mandatory. If a musher does not go to the banquet dressed in full mushing gear (fur hats and parkas) and meet all the people, and does not go up and drew his/her bib number in front of the audience, he/she is disqualified before the race starts. It should be a night of peace, setting the mind, getting gear and dogs ready – as should the entire last two or three days before the race. It is instead, a night of partying, dancing, raising hell – and for some – serious professional drinking.”
Seriously though, a highly recommended book! Funny, insightful, and informative about the last great race on earth… The Iditarod!

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