Ski Whiz enthusiasts jump on vintage snowmobile memorabilia.
At the peak of snowmobile manufacture, companies marketed machines and anything and everything to go with them. Ski Whiz made the Sno Cruiser, a sled pulled behind the snowmobile known as the "Skiboose." Produced in the early 1970s, the rig is a rare sight today, as many were put to work on farms as wood sleds after their life on the trails ended. Whiz-N-Day 2005 boasted three Skibooses, including one completely restored by collector and event organizer Joe Poncelet.
The Bellechester, Minn., show also featured an exhibit of Massey Ferguson/Ski Whiz memorabilia. Items displayed included owner's manuals, brochures, books and signs, patches, parts and decals. Among Joe's treasures: an original sled cover. He also recalled that Ski Whiz protective goggles and boots were originally available with the purchase of a new machine. An entire box of collectible matchbooks with the Ski Whiz sled on the cover was handed out to 2005 Whiz-N-Day participants. Those present also got a close look at the Ski Whiz clothing line, including snowmobile suits, sweaters, caps, mittens and helmets on display in the Bellechester Community Center.
The hall also served as a gathering spot for fellowship and refreshments. Tables were decorated with buckets of yellow-tinted snowballs (crafted from cotton balls) and yellow snowmen. Chili was accompanied by cookies frosted with favorite Ski Whiz model numbers on top. Baked goods were in plentiful supply: "Best of Show" was likely the Ski Whiz-shaped cake crafted by Lavonne Holton and her neighbor. Complete with heart-shaped gem headlights, the masterpiece arrived in one piece after being driven in from Merrill, Iowa.