Bahrke talks life outside moguls skiing
August 8, 2008
Shannon Bahrke of Tahoe City is by no means your average moguls skier.The Olympic silver medalist may seem like she runs bumps all day long, but with a passion for things like coffee, race cars, music and the color pink, Bahrke turns the ordinary into the extraordinary in a way only she knows how.The U.S. Ski Team caught up to Bahrke recently for a Q andamp; A that digs deeper than her skiing career.Q: So, you were out for the 2008 season with an injury, but now youre back. Whats your favorite part of being back with the team?A: My favorite thing about being back is being with the team. We really have such an amazing team and its really fun to see those guys in the gym working hard and everyone joking around and having a good time. Sometimes the season can be a little stressful, but its nice to be back with everyone and see their smiling faces.Q: Youre obviously a highly decorated athlete. Where do you keep all your awards?A: I usually give all the big ones to my mom and she hangs them around the house. But, my silver medal, my uncle made me a beautiful box to hang it on the wall but I am so afraid that if someone breaks in and sees it in the box, theyll take it. So, I am looking into getting a safe to put it in, but we have it at my house and we look at it all the time.Q: You recently started your own coffee company, Silver Bean Coffee Co. Where did the idea for that come from?A: My boyfriend Matt is a super-entrepreneur. He started his own business and sold it. Weve always known we wanted to start our own business together and one day we were in a coffee shop hanging out after a day of skiing and we were talking about how much fun skiing is and our biggest jumps and kickers and I kind of sat back and thought, this is such a cool, fun thing to be in a coffee shop with your friends, and it hit me that maybe we could start up a coffee company. We researched if it was viable and it turned out that you can make a lot of money in coffee, so that was our catalyst.Q: We hear you have another outlet for adrenaline outside of skiing that involves racing cars. Care to expand?A: If I made a little more money, I would do that every weekend. It is just the most fun thing. I never thought that I was into car racing, but a couple of our friends are from Detroit and wanted us to come out to the track and I thought it was dumb but when they finally talked me into it I fell in love with it and have been hooked ever since. Its so expensive to go out there so you have to moderate it. If we want to skip an electrical bill, we can go car racing.Q: Is it true that you can play the trumpet?A: I played in a symphonic band and a jazz band and a wind ensemble. Yes, I was a total band geek and I loved it and I miss it so much. I know that I can still read music, but I need a refresher. It was a big part of my life.Q: So, youve had purple hair and now its got a bright shade of pink in it. How did that happen?A: A year ago I was in my hairdressers shop and said I was really bored of being a blonde, what can I do? And she said that she could put purple in my hair. So I did a little strip, then a little more and a little more and then I got bored with purple and I went with pink. Ive had pink for about a year now and I really like it and I really want to do my whole head, but I dont think Id be brave enough to do that. Q: Is there any circumstance under which you would dye your whole head pink?A: Oh, if I won a gold medal at World Championships or at the Olympics I would dye my whole head pink.Q: You know were going to hold you to that.A: I know. If I win, I will definitely do that. Q: Your brother Scotty is also on the U.S. Freestyle Ski Team. Whats that dynamic like?A: Thats another thing, if Scotty ever wins a medal at the Olympics, Ill dye my whole head pink. I think our dynamic is so amazing. I think it was hard for Scotty growing up because I did have a lot of accomplishments, but it has been so amazing for me to see him come through the ranks and be just as good. For him to be in a field of such great aerialists with Speedy [Jeret Speedy Peterson] and St. Onge [Ryan St. Onge], to be ranked the highest aerialist is huge. I dont know if he would answer that question any differently, but I think we have such a good relationship and I just love him so much. I look up to him and I think we have a really good thing going. I want to be walking into the Opening Ceremonies in the 2010 Olympics with him that would be the coolest thing ever.Q: It would be even cooler if you both had a whole head of pink hair.A: I dont know if he would be up for that. I would do it!