Winter is in full swing, and across most of the country, that means snow. Michiganders are hitting the slopes and the trails to indulge in all of their favorite winter activities, but many many may not realize that one of those winter sports they're enjoying was actually invented right here in Michigan.
Snowboarding, set to be part once again of the 2022 Winter Olympics starting February 4th, was invented in Muskegon, Michigan.On Christmas Day in 1965 by a man named Sherman Poppen. Poppen, worked in his garage to invent a new, fun toy for his daughters. He fastened two Kmart skies together and used a rope to control himself as he "surfed" down the hill. The new toy was dubbed the Snurfer ( snow + surfing)
“When I saw how much fun the kids had Christmas Day,” Poppen told Skiing Heritage,
“I spent the next week in Goodwill and everywhere else buying up every water ski I could find.”
In addition to Michigan being the state where snowboarding was born, it was also the site of some of the very first competitions in the sport starting in 1978 with the National Snurfing Championship
, held in Muskegon, Michigan. Snowboarding is now one of the biggest draws at the 1998 Winter Games after making its Olympic debut in Nagano, Japan.
Today you can head to any ski resort, any local ski hill, anywhere in the world, and you will see future Shaun Whites
and Chloe Kims
racing down the hill on a "toy" that was invented right here in the Mitten State on a Christmas day.
Michigan's 299 Snowplows Get the Cutest Names Ever
The Michigan Department of Transportation has revealed the winning names assigned to each of its snowplows throughout the state.
Here they are, sorted by region.