Celebrate Sepp Kober at The Homestead This Weekend

Sepp Kober, the Grand Old Man of Southern Skiing, will be recalled this weekend by a program at The Homestead where he brought skiing South.

Austrian immigrant Sepp Kober introduced big time skiing to the South at The Homestead in 1959.  This Saturday, the resort will honor “The Father of Southern Skiing” with a “Fireside Chat” history program, one of many presented during the resort’s 250th anniversay.

I was honored when The Homestead asked me to present a photography program about Kober. As an editor at SkiSoutheast.Com and author of Southern Snow: The Winter Guide to Dixie,  I hope you’ll join me Saturday at 4 pm to recall Sepp and his innovative career. He started skiing at The Homestead but helped design, launch, and equip many of the South’s slopes and early ski shops, and even nurtured the region’s first ski clubs.

Kober is the only southeastern ski industry figure to be inducted into the U.S National Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame and I was proud to claim him as a longtime acquaintance and friend before his death in 2010. My illustrated program “Sepp Kober and The Homestead: Founders of Southern Skiing” will tell the story of a man who claims an amazing list of firsts for skiing south of the Mason-Dixon Line.

I’m pleased to also expect Roanoke ski writer David Barudin to attend, an expert on Southern skiing who was largely responsible for the multiyear effort that earned Sepp Hall of Fame induction.

Kober was quite a guy, and I am excited about meeting Homestead skiers and guests this weekend at a resort that was born in 1766 and even hosted Thomas Jefferson at its famous hot spring spa.

The Homestead promises “a truly engaging session hosted by a Lowell Thomas Award-winning travel writer whose bylines have appeared in national publications including the Miami Herald and National Geographic Traveler”—and I will do my best to live up to that billing.

I’ll have some of my books on hand for sale and display, including the new full color Hiking North Carolina, and Hiking the Blue Ridge Parkway. And I’ll distribute free color bookmarks featuring my soon to be released coffee table book, Grandfather Mountain: The History and Guide to an Appalachian Icon, that New York Times bestselling author Robert Morgan proclaims, “a work of art commensurate with the grandeur of the mountain itself.” In addition, Our State Editor Vicky Jarrett said the book reads “like a James Michener novel.”

The focus however will be solely on Sepp and how his contribution to “the past” has made the South a key component to “the future” of skiing in the United States. The Omni Homestead, a member of the Historic Hotels of America, is justifiably proud to be part of that heritage.

For more on The Omni Homestead Resort

To make reservations at The Omni Homestead Resort for this weekend’s Sepp Kober event, and in future,  please contact (800) 838-1766 or visit www.thehomestead.com. Don’t miss other weekly Fireside Chats during the 250th Anniversary of The Omni Homestead. Visit OmniHomestead250.com.

Believe it or not, the the storied Omni Homestead Resort is celebrating its 250th Anniversary in 2016 and still offering unparalleled hospitality and southern charm in a 2,000-acre setting within the Allegheny Mountains of southwestern Virginia. Besides offering the South’s first downhill ski area; The Omni Homestead Resort is renowned for its natural healing springs. It’s distinguished by 483 luxurious guest rooms and suites, 72,000 square feet of meeting space, a wide array of fine and casual dining choices, and more than 30 recreational amenities. The resort offers an expansive, luxurious spa with exclusive, adults-only spa garden and two championship golf courses including The Cascades, one of the nation’s finest mountain courses. Allegheny Springs is a two-acre family-friendly water attraction complete with lazy river, water slides, family pool and water play zone that is popular during ski season. There’s a beautiful Equestrian Center with 28 stalls, visiting barn with 40 stalls and riding arena; top-rated Shooting Club with trap, skeet, sporting clays; fly-fishing; archery; falconry; off-road Segway tours; Mini Cascades, a new 18-hole miniature golf course and a wealth of other recreational attractions. The Homestead became part of Omni Hotels & Resorts on July 1, 2013.

Another Ski Event

Speaking of ski events, do not miss the Ski Southeast Summit at Snowshoe Mountain. Kenny and Mike have been touting this must attend event and there will be camaraderie and fun at Snowshoe the first weekend in March. Hope you’re there. Think Snow.

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Randy Johnson
Johnson has been chronicling skiing in the South since the 1980s as a columnist for the Charlotte Observer and author of the 1987 “cult classic” "Southern Snow: The Winter Guide to Dixie" (soon to be republished). Johnson is a Lowell Thomas Award-winning travel writer whose articles have appeared in many national newspapers and magazines, including the Miami Herald, National Geographic Traveler, Ski, and Skiing. His new University of North Carolina Press book "Grandfather Mountain: The History and Guide to an Appalachian Icon," debuts next April. Visit him at www.randyjohnsonbooks.com.