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Mission
The mission of the Northland 300 is to raise funds for Special Olympics Minnesota through year-round activities planned by an all-volunteer Board of Directors.
 
Vision
The Northland 300 is committed to positively impacting the lives of Special Olympics Minnesota athletes through hands-on learning experiences.  By opening doors of opportunity for people with intellectual disabilities, the Northland 300 strives to teach the athletes new and improved fundraising techniques to take back and implement within their own teams.   With the athletes always in mind, the Northland 300 aims to present all those involved in Special Olympics Minnesota with priceless life lessons.

 

   

   

(1989 Northland 300)

 

 (2008 Northland 300)

 

 

(Teen Northland)

 

(Northland Road Rally)

 

(Photography by Bruce Mosher)

 

   

 (Photography by Denny Warner)

 

   

(Photography by Denny Warner)

 

 

 

 
Tell Me About The Northland 300
The Northland 300 is a 300 mile, 3-day, charity snowmobile ride, made up of volunteer participants who raise funds to support Special Olympics Minnesota.  The Northland 300 is never cancelled.  The Northland 300 is all about people, snowmobilers, the charity, the towns and the combination therof.  The Northland 300 was built on friendships and the friendships continue to grow each year. Friendships and comaraderie of the riders and the folks we meet at our checkpoints in the towns along the way.
 
The Northland 300 event is planned by and all volunteer Board of Directors for volunteer snowmobile enthusiasts.  The Northland 300 is made possible by its Sponsors and Partners so that all funds go directly to support Special Olympics Minnesota.  Rider donations are achieved through sponsorships, raffle ticket sales, company and general donations.  Activities to raise funds include Road Rallies, golf outings plus other Special Events.
 
History
Planning for the first Northland 300 began in 1988 with the actual ride taking place for the first time in January, 1989.Procedures, venues, and activities of Northland functions are planned and administered by a volunteer Board of Directors.

 

 

100% of all funds raised goes directly to Special Olympics Minnesota to benefit its athletes.  The athletes are the persons Special Olympics serve who are individuals with intellectual disabilities.)

 

More than 700 volunteer snowmobile enthusiasts have participated on the Northland 300 since inception.

 

More than 696,900 miles have been traveled on the North Shore, Two Harbors, Lutsen, Eveleth, Ely and surrounding areas on the Northland 300 event(s) since inception.

 

The Northland 300 volunteer snowmobile enthusiasts have support the sport of snowmobiling, local businesses in the state of Minnesota and the non-profit organization of Special Olympics Minnesota.

 

Mentions

In 1995 it was decided to both diversify and carry on the traditions of volunteerism through safe snowmobiling, thus Teen Northland was established.  This was the first charity snowmobile ride for teens.

 

A decision to end this even was decided in 2003 due to a lack of snow for 5 consecutive years.  It has since been replaced with the Northland Road Rally.

 

In 2003, the Northland Road rally had its inaugral ride.  Its venue contained an Opening Ceremony where the Special Olympics "Flame of Hope" was run in by its athletes to light the cauldron.  This even included motorcycles, custom cars & trucks and even a motorhome.

 

The Northland 300 is recognized as the first Partner/Sponsor of Special Olympics Minnesota.  This is a commitment to raise in excess of $100,000 per year.

 

The Northland 300 reached over $2Million in its fundraising efforts in 2004... thus becoming the Two Million Dollar Ride.

 

The Northland 300 and Special Olympics Minnesota made history as first time ever Special Olympics Athlete Steven Eull and Coach Jason Reinsch participated and completed the 2009 Northland 300.

 

The Northland 300 reached over $3Million in its fundraising efforts in 2009... thus becoming the Three Million Dollar Ride.

 

In 2014, the Northland 300 inducted a new torch to light the "Flame of Hope" commemorating Billy Meister, son of Pooker Meister and past participant of the Northland 300.

 

The Northland 300 reached over $4Million in its fundraising efforts in 2014... thus becoming the Four Million Dollar Ride.


2016 - Northland 300 was given the Special Olympics Distinguished Service Award of 'Outstanding Nonprofit'.  


Achievements

From 1994 through 1998, the Northland 300 has won state, national and international awards for their example of safe and responsible snowmobiling, along with exemplary volunteerism and fundraising.

 

1990-Present

First Partner/Sponsor Special Olympics Minnesota (committed to raising a minimum of $100,000 per year)

 

1990-Present

Recognized by the National Snowmobile Institute

 

1990-1993

Participant in the Tread Lightly Program

 

1993

Honorable Mention Award International Snowmobile Conference

 

1993-1994

First Runner Up - National Yamaha Pride Contest

 

1993-1994

Minnesota State Winner - Yamaha Pride Contest

 

1993-1995

Participant in STEER CLEAR Program for Responsible Snowmobiling

 

1994-1995

National Winner - Yamaha Pride Contest

 

1994-1995

Minnesota State Winner - Yamaha Pride Contest - Supported by MN United Snowmobilers Association

 

1995-Present

Member/Participant in the Safe Snowmobiling Program

 

1995-Present

Home of the first teen charity snowmobile ride - Teen Northland

 

1996-1997

Winner of the International Snwomobiling Foundation Charity Award

 

1997-1998

Teen Northland is the winner of the International Snowmobiling Foundation Charity Award

 

2004

Exceed the $2Million mark in funds raised for Special Olympics Minnesota

 

2007

Northland 300 became a Premier Partner of Special Olympics Minnesota

 

2009

History is made for the Northland 300 and Special Olympics Minnesota as first time ever Special Olympics Athlete Steven Eull and Coach Jason Reinsch participate in the Northland 300

 

2009

Exceed the $3Million mark in funds raised for Special Olympics Minnesota

 

2013

Mayor Randy Bolen (Two Harbors, MN) presents the "Key to the City" to Volunteer Event Director, Kathy Karkula and declares January 24th "Northland 300 Day."

 

2013

Tyler Bengston, Special Olympics Minnesota Athlete participates and completes the Northland 300 for the first time ever riding with his Dad (Steve Bengston)

 

2013

First Time Ever Night Time Opening Ceremony held at Grand Ely Lodge, Ely, MN

 

2014

Induction of a new torch to light the "Flame of Hope" commemorating Billy Meister, son of Pooker Meister and past participant of the Northland 300

 

2014

Exceed the $4Million mark in funds raised for Special Olympics Minnesota


2016

Northland 300 was given the Special Olympics Distinguished Service Award of 'Outstanding Nonprofit'

 

 

Recognition

The Northland 300 is recognized and supported by its peers at:
  • Minnesota United Snowmobile Association
  • The International Snowmobile Institute
  • Steer Clear Program

 

 

Growth of the Northland 300 (Actual)

Event Year

Participants

Funds Raised

Admin Costs

Admin Costs

w/In-Kind Donations

1989

42 snowmobilers

$ 38,646

21%

*

1990

71 snowmobilers

$ 55,455

29%

*

1991

91 snowmobilers

$ 65,790

30%

*

1992

61 snowmobilers

$ 66,531

24%

19%

1993

88 snowmobilers

$ 90,247

23%

9%

1994

124 snowmobilers

$108,549

23%

20%

1995

134 snowmobilers

$176,149

25%

16%

1996

113 snowmobilers

$182,007

30%

19%

1997

87 snowmobilers

$166,713

28%

17%

1998

114 snowmobilers

$214,571

22%

14%

1999

89 snowmobilers

$169,679

25%

16%

2000

93 snowmobilers

$177,738

26%

16%

2001

104 snowmobilers

$174,958

20%

14%

2002

80 snowmobilers

$157,501

27%

16%

2003

90 snowmobilers

$169,695

21%

14%

2004

71 snowmobilers

$146,284

19%

15%

2005

87 snowmobilers

$199,373

21%

12%

2006

85 snowmobilers

$155,599

23%

16%

2007

96 snowmobilers

$172,393

22%

19%

2008

126 snowmobilers

$227,472

22%

18%

2009

89 snowmobilers

$203,284

17%

12%

2010

96 snowmobilers

$193,140

18%

15%

2011

75 snowmobilers

$183,471

25%

17%

2012

71 snowmobilers

$184,326

16%

13%

2013 

82 snowmobilers

$175,552

28%

17%

2014 

62 Snowmobilers

$167,409

27%

18%

2015 

77 Snowmobilers

$181,264

27%

18%

2016               79 Snowmobilers        $153,082              24%                         18%
  
 
TOTAL:

2,479 snowmobilers

$4,357,239

22%

14%

 

*In-Kind Donations were established in 1992

Minnesota guidelines to put on a charity event encourage administrative costs not to exceed 30%