Q&A With Chuck Allen Scholarship Recipients Brandon and Konnor Ralph

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Konnor Ralph taking top honors in rail jam at the 2017 USASA Nationals

The USASA Foundation sat down with Brendon and Konnor Ralph, two of the 29 athletes who were awarded the 2017 Chuck Allen Scholarship, to hear about the importance and honor of receiving the Chuck Allen Scholarship. Chuck Allen, founder of USASA, started this scholarship fund to support athletes who showed a commitment to community, good grades, participation in their chosen forms of education and a strong commitment to USASA and their local USASA series. We’re so proud of all of our recipients and are wonderful examples of USASA athletes who personify the codes of excellence, respect and fun.

 

Why is being a recipient of the Chuck Allen Scholarship important to you and your freestyle skiing pursuits?

Receiving the scholarships is an honor! The scholarship committee awarded these to us based on what they read in our applications. Receiving the Chuck Allen Scholarship provides us feedback that our hard work in school, our positive attitudes, our efforts to be kind to others and our goal to become even better freestyle skiers is noticed and appreciated by others.

 

What are you excited to do with this scholarship?

Our parents sacrifice in order to allow us to freestyle ski. We are so grateful for the time they commit getting us to competitions, all the money they spend on car expenses, lodging, meals and ski equipment, and definitely for their emotional support and encouragement!

Our scholarship awards will go toward Windells ski camp this summer. This money, on top of what we both earned through our paid jobs, makes Windells possible. Without any coaching opportunities where we live, we merely rely on each other for guidance and coaching.The summer camp opportunity allows us to receive great direction, guidance and support from an actual coach. We are really excited about being able to go!

 

 
Brendon Ralph during the 2017 USASA Nationals at Copper Mountain, CO

How has USASA positively affected you life?

USASA competitions and being a freestyle skier is a major source of joy to us! It’s challenging and super rewarding. When we aren’t skiing we are dreaming about skiing!

Through USASA competitions we have been able to travel and compete in hills across the Inland Northwest were we never would have gone otherwise. We have met a ton of new friends from all over who love skiing as much as we do and also some really supportive adults. USASA has been an incredible experience.

29 USASA Members Awarded Chuck Allen Scholarships

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The USASA Foundation awarded 29 USASA members the 2017 Chuck Allen Scholarship. The Chuck Allen Scholarship rewards athletes who demonstrate the characteristics and qualities most valued by Chuck Allen, founder of the USASA; a commitment to community, good grades, participation in the athlete’s chosen forms of education and a strong commitment to USASA and their local USASA series.

Applicants were required to share their USASA results, a summary of who they are, their future dreams and hopes, three letters of recommendation from a coach, teacher or community member on those important character traits and a sealed official school transcript on academic performance and participation.

Receiving the Chuck Allen Scholarship provides us feedback that our hard work in school, our positive attitudes, our efforts to be kind to others and our goal to become even better freestyle skiers is noticed and appreciated by others.” - Konnor and Brendon Ralph, slopestyle and rail jam freeskiers from the Inland Northwest Series.  

 The USASA Foundation distributes financial awards to a recipient’s chosen organization to offset their further educational, recreational or training costs. The USASA Foundation is the fundraising arm of USASA and to date has awarded over $21,000 for both the Chuck Allen Scholarship and the Nationals Assistance Fund for the 2016/17 season.


Chuck Allen and USASA Alum and Olympian Louie Vito circa 2010

Click here to support the USASA Foundation.

Congratulations to all 29 of the 2017 USASA Foundation Chuck Allen Scholarship recipients!

Spencer Vagg           Evan Andrus             Andre Kemink
Gillian Arnold            Brendon Ralph          Avery Higgins-Lopez
Hanna Blackwell       Sophia Saccoccie     Colin Bentley
Zachary Poulin          Kaitlyn Blizzard         Oskar Chadwell
Mika Kizuka              Gunnar Anthony        Shannon Bently
Konnor Ralph            Riley Jacobs             Shayne Sandblom
Parker Anthony         Jake Johnson           Audrey Higgins-Lopez 
Dante Kemink           Zack Zaman             Otto Lichtensleiger
Martin Khlop             Ryder Bollock            Luke Bulloch
Molly Croes              Kaiya Quintieri

USASA Members Save Up To $300 on Summer Ski and Snowboard Camps

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Summer is officially here and USASA wants to make sure your summer is filled with time on snow! Woodward Copper, Woodward Tahoe, SASS Global Travel, BKPRO, Windells, and High Cascade are all offering amazing deals on summer camps for USASA members.
 
Here's a list of discounts to summer camp for valid USASA members:

SASS Argentina is nearly SOLD OUT! If you are looking to make this unreal summer training opportunity happen this year, you need to get on it ASAP. A bunch of USASA athletes are already signed up. All USASA members get $300 offINQUIRE HERE.

*The $85 price is only valid May1-August 31, 2017
**As always, Ruggies are free and Groms are just $50.

Early-bird 2018 USASA Memberships only $85 starting May 1

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We want to keep the spring season stoke alive so starting today, May 1st, we’re offering early-bird 2017-18 USASA Membership pricing. For just $85 you can lock in your 2017-18 USASA membership which gets you big discounts on this summer’s snowboard and freeski camps and a whole lot more. Plus you’ll be all set to shred when the snow starts falling! This price is only valid May 1-August 31.

Here’s a list of discounts to summer camp for valid USASA members:

Click here to renew your USASA Membership for the 2017-18 Season.

**As always, Ruggies are free and Groms are just $50.

Connie Brogden wins SASS Global Travel's Argentina Big Mountain Backcountry Summer Camp

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Huge congratualtions to USASA Athlete Connie Brogden! Winner of a free session to SASS Global Travel's SASS Argentina big mountain backcountry summer camp. Connie will be headed to the Southern Hemisphere for full-on winter conditions in the heart of the freeride playground that is the Andes of Patagonia, Argentina. While at SASS Argentina Connie will be able to take her competitive USASA foundation into big mountain terrain while gaining backcountry expereince and knowledge. In addition to the integrated education, an endless amount of fun awaits her as well - new friends, backcountry jump building sessions, pow laps, natural features, face shots, high fives, beautiful views and a chance to expereince the culture and food of Argentina. SASS Argentina is an experience unlike any other. Congrats Connie!

Bummed you didn't win? We get it. We too are insanely jealous of Connie. But don't worry, SASS has you covered. All USASA Athletes are eligible to recieve a $300 discount to SASS Argentina. That means that you too could be shredding the Andes this summer for less than you might think. CLICK HERE to find out more about how to make it happen.

For those of you that didn't make it to their tent while at USASA Nationals, SASS Argentina is a full service guided big mountain backcountry expereince based out of Bariloche, Argentina. They rent out an entire lodge at the base of South America's largest ski area to take advantage of full-on winter conditions during our summer months. With a professional guide staff made up of a cast of professional skiers and snowboarders who have transitioned their skills to the backcountry over the years, this program is built to bring your skiing or snowboaring to the next level.

SASS is excited to continue its mission of teaching the next generation of backcountry skiers and snowboarders this summer in Argentina as well as directly to USASA athletes next season. Keep an eye out for more learning opportunities coming form SASS. Follow them on Instagram for the most up to date info about their programs, presentations and where they will be next.

All photos courtesy of Ben Giardi

USASA Nationals Finishes Strong at Copper Mountain

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Sunny spring days continued here at Copper Mountain, CO as the Breaker, Grommet and Junior girls took to the Columbia Halfpipe along with Legend men and women for the final day of competition at USASA Nationals.Brynn Wedlake, from the Rocky Mountain Series, took home gold in Youth Women, followed by Annika Paz of the Central Oregon Series, while third place and Columbia Sportswear’s $400 gift card for Best Trick went to Marea Adams for a alley-oop 360.  The highest air went to Legend (ages 40-49), Devin Azevedo winning a set of wireless speakers from Braven for a 4ft alley-oop Japan.Photo: Woo Freeski

Youth and junior boys dominated the Kind Snacks slopestyle course with Zane Severson from the Youth boys division landing a double 1260 to take home gold. Henrik De Jounge took gold for the Juniors

Breaker, Grommet and Menehune boys raced down the skiercross course on the hunt for USASA National titles with Gannon Stewart, Conrad Sweatman and Tanner Murphy taking home top honors.

Click here or a full list of results.

The USASA Freeskiing Nationals’ action continues through April 12th. Click here for the complete schedule of events and follow live scoring and up-to-date results on our Kyocera/Verizon mobile app at m.mobile.usasa.org. Download FREE photos of all the competitors and awards at VASTACTION.COM.

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