Three local athletes qualify for 2020 Arctic Winter Games

Joe McWilliams
Lakeside Leader

Slave Lake area athletes will compete in the 2020 Arctic Winter Games in both Arctic Sports and Dene Games. Team Alberta North held trials for both these sport categories in Slave Lake on Nov. 23. Surviving and prevailing were Cruz McGregor and Ethan Baril of Slave Lake in Arctic Sports, and Zaphira Ey of Assineau in Dene Games.

McGregor qualified in the Open Male age group. As such, he’ll be competing in a grueling series of feats of strength and agility: the one-foot high kick, two-foot high kick, kneel jump, Alaskan high kick, sledge jump, triple jump, airplane, one-hand reach, head pull and knuckle hop.

Baril, being in the Junior Male category doesn’t get to try the airplane, knuckle hop or head pull. On the other hand, he and the other juniors do one called arm pull.

Ey is in the Junior Female category in the Dene Games. This includes snow snake, stick pull and finger pull (individual events) and pole push and hand games on the team side of things.

This year’s tryouts were were held at Northern Lakes College, with 89 taking part. The bulk of those were in the Dene Games category. Coordinator Tim Horsman says Slave Lake, being central to northern Alberta, is often chosen to host such events, with competitors coming from all across the north.

The Arctic Winter Games are in Whitehorse, Yukon, March 15 – 21.

Left to right, Keegan McKay and Michael Boudreau compete against each other in the stick pull tryouts. Both are in the junior male category and from Fort Chipewyan, on the western edge of Lake Athabasca. Stick pull is a Dene Game; the stick is greased, making it very hard to hold onto.

Share this post

Post Comment