Mark Wellman keynote speaker at ‘A Toast to Tahoe Skiing’ | SierraSun.com

Mark Wellman keynote speaker at ‘A Toast to Tahoe Skiing’

Mark Wellman, a nationally acclaimed author, filmmaker and motivational speaker will be the Squaw Valley Institute’s “Toast to Tahoe Skiing” keynote speaker.

Despite being paralyzed in a mountain climbing accident, Mark has inspired millions to meet their problems head-on and reach for their full potential. A two-time Paralympian and former Yosemite Park Ranger, Wellman’s “no limits” philosophy encourages individuals to adventure into new horizons; to go beyond the seeming unreachable.

In the spring of 1993, Wellman skied 50 miles, the first paraplegic to sit-ski across the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range with only the use of his arms. The Trans-Sierra crossing started at Ellery Lake, on the east side of the Sierra, ascended over the 10,000 foot Tioga Pass, and four days later ended at Crane Flat. He is the first and currently only person to accomplish this feat. Wellman will speak about this journey and his experiences skiing in the Tahoe region. “Climbing Back” is Wellman’s autobiography: a story of his struggle to survive a disabling accident, to become a park ranger, an accomplished wheel-chair athlete and ultimately to climb the sheer granite faces of El Capitan and Half Dome. He has designed “adaptive” equipment and developed programs to inspire and motivate others.

“Mountain Dreamers: celebrating the pioneering spirit and history of skiing at Lake Tahoe,” the Second Annual Toast to Tahoe Skiing gala is slated for Nov. 7 at Olympic Valley’s Resort at Squaw Creek. A fundraiser for Squaw Valley Institute, a nonprofit organization bringing cultural and educational events to the Lake Tahoe region, the evening will bring together entertaining and informative speakers, an evening of gourmet food, a dynamic fashion show, a video history of Lake Tahoe’s resorts, an auction and the premiere of the Lake Tahoe segment of a major new ski film.

Sponsors for the event include Sierra Heritage Magazine, Resorts Sports Network, Tahoe TV, Squaw Valley Times, Inside Tahoe Truckee TV, Squaw Valley USA, Alpine Meadows, Homewood Mountain Resort, Resort at Squaw Creek, and Cutler Graphic Design.

Resort at Squaw Creek, doors open at 6 p.m., dinner served 6:30 p.m. To purchase tickets online and for more information visit http://www.squawvalleyinstitute.org or call 581-4138.