Jans Winter Welcome gala reaches $500k fundraising goal benefitting YSA

PARK CITY, Utah — The Stein Eriksen Lodge at the Deer Valley Resort was the scene at which to be seen on Saturday night for the Jans Winter Welcome (JWW), a black tie, sold out gala for the Youth Sports Alliance (YSA). 2,200 students at 22 schools were the beneficiaries of sports programming over the past year as a result of the efforts of the community at large.

Stella and Zoe Robinson, former Ski Team athletes, and current University of Utah students, attended with event founder Jan Peterson’s daughter Andrea Terwillegar, wife Amanda, and son in law Joe Cordery. Zoe and Stella’s mom, Tory was the inspiration for the event 42 years ago. Zoe said, “It’s wonderful that so many caring people still get together every year to celebrate local young athletes and provide support to help make their Olympic dreams come true.”

YSA’s seven competitive teams, along with its elementary after school and its middle school after school sessions allow children to learn and to love sports throughout Summit and Wasatch Counties. Jim Gaddis, Bob Marsh, and Russ Coburn have helped ensure such opportunities for decades and were once again, dressed up and donating at JWW. They were joined by representatives of Park City Mountain’s Vail Epic Promise, Rossignol, and Intermountain Healthcare Sports Medicine at the silent auction. Attendees enjoyed a three course gourmet meal, and live auction, which was emceed by Tom Kelly. 

Newly named U.S. Ski and Snowboard athlete Sami Worthington, 18, who grew up in Park City said, “I’m excited to start the season and I’m so appreciative of all the people here tonight to help out so many talented athletes. We are looking forward this year to using the new ski runs at the Utah Olympic Park; we’ve never had our own, dedicated, ski facilities before.” She ended by saying, “I mostly want to thank my parents and my coaches for getting me where I am today.”

Worthington, Izzy Atkin, Macey Schoemaker, Christina Morelli, and other next generation athletes volunteered at JWW  before dispersing to all four corners of the global map, to train, compete and attend camps. Many of them were able to do this with the need-based assistance of the Stein Eriksen Endowment Dare to Dream Scholarship Fund.

YSA’s Jan Mitchell picked the winning ticket for the Opportunity Drawing that thousands of Park City sports supporters purchased in the run up to JWW. Tim Brenwald was the lucky winner of the trip to a five star resort in Mexico. Live auction participants donated towards trips to Belize and to Africa. Silent auction participants looked at and looked for hundreds of items and experiences. After all was said and done, YSA reached its JWW goal of raising $500,000.

Attendees like newly named Deer Valley President Todd Burnett, mixed in the crowd of 450 people including YSA staff member Heather Simms, three-time Olympian Anders Johnson, Wasatch Luge Executive Director Pete Gilwald, volunteer and nine-time Olympic Announcer Carl Roepke, 10 year old athletes and their coaches including Emma Garrard along with Salt Lake 2030/34 Olympic Bid Committee member Colin Hilton.

The night wrapped up on the disco-balled dance floor where, skiers Bella Wright alongside Alix Wilkinson, crutches akimbo, celebrated yet another successful event. 

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