Smalley Park to host pair of water skiing events

Skiers will try and break Guinness record Saturday
Morgan Rode
Sports Editor

SHAWANO — Smalley Park will be site to two water skiing events this weekend.

On Saturday, from 8 a.m. - 3 p.m., the Wisconsin Water Ski Federation (WWSF) and the Shawano Ski Sharks will host the Scott Coley Memorial Waterski Tournament. Starting at 7 a.m. Sunday, members from 11 different water skiing teams will join forces to try and break the Guinness World Record for most barefooters behind a boat at one time.

The Scott Coley Tournament will include teams from around the state, but with a twist.

All the skiers put their names into a hat, from which teams are then drawn at random. The teams will then have just one hour to plan a 45-minute show for the fans in attendance.

The show is free and concessions will be provided, with all proceeds going to charity.

“The Scott Coley Tournament is a great way to get skiers from around the state in one place to have some fun for one last event of the season,” said Dave Passehl, the president of the Ski Sharks. “It’s certainly going to be cold according to the forecast, but we’ll put together some entertaining shows and try to raise some money for the Wisconsin Water Ski Federation at the same time.”

The tournament is also a chance to show off Smalley Park.

“We hope to show off our awesome site and great town to others showskiers, as well as show our ability to hold tournaments and host large numbers of skiers at our new site, in hopes to host more tournaments in Shawano in the future as our site gets its finishing touches,” said Brad Keuschel, the show director for the Ski Sharks.

Keuschel said a bid was put in for Smalley Park to host the 2021 Division 2 Show Ski National Championships, “and this is a good showing of how perfect our site and town would be for it.”

The Guinness World Record currently sits at 32 skiers and was set in Shawano in 2017. A total of 35 skiers, with some coming up from Florida, are prepared to try and set a new record Sunday.

This event is also free for the public to attend.

“We have been working very hard to help use our ski team’s platform to promote Shawano and what it has to offer,” said Passehl. “Bringing Guinness World Records to our town is an awesome way to showcase our city and it’s waterways.”

“When the organizers of these record attempts ask to host them in our hometown, we feel proud to have the perfect ski site and a supportive community to accept the invitation to host and participate in the World Records.”

No boat traffic will be allowed on Wolf River between 7-11 a.m. to allow the record attempts in a safe environment. Media members will be positioned atop the road bridge and a barricade will be in place to warn motorists of their presence, but it is not expected to impede traffic flow.