The Ralph Toscano Memorial Benefit Race – "He Raced, He Skied, He Cajoled"

By AlpineZone News |
Feb 07 2007 - 12:58 PM

BARTLETT, New Hamoshire — A race in memory the of late Ralph Toscano will take place at Attitash in Bartlett, New Hampshire on Sunday, February 25, 2007. All proceeds will benefit the AbilityPlus Program, the adaptive ski school at Attitash.

“The mission of AbilityPlus is to provide enjoyable, safe and constructive recreational opportunities in Mount Washington Valley for individuals with various physical and/or developmental disabilities increasing their independence and enriching their lives,” said Erik Corbett, mono-skier and director of the AbilityPlus program at Attitash. “Ralph was one of the first instructors in the adaptive program here and had a tremendous impact on many students’ lives.”

“His joy in sharing his love of skiing with others was palpable. His devotion to the program, the volunteers and the athletes was immeasurable,” said Beth Davis, past director of AbilityPlus Inc. “His smile, dependability and willingness will be missed by all.”

Ralph Toscano passed away May 28, 2006. He was an avid skier and volunteered as an Attitash adaptive coach for 10 years. Ralph also shared his generosity and vivacity for life as an active volunteer with the Mount Washington Valley Chamber, Eastern Slope Ski Club junior ski program, and many other organizations in the Mount Washington Valley.

“Ralph was an incredibly gracious individual. He loved the sport of skiing and wanted to share that with everyone,” said Joanne Toscano, “He lived life to the fullest and his energy and enthusiasm was infectious.”

To continue Toscano’s efforts in evolving and sharing the sport of adaptive skiing his family, friends and colleagues are coordinating this benefit race. The race will be a GS format starting at 10:00 AM. Each competitor will get two runs. The racers in each division, who have the most consistent time, on the course, will win.

The registration fee is $55.00 ($45.00 for Season Passholders) and includes an Attitash 1-Day Lift Ticket (for race day), continental breakfast, GS Race and a memorial reception in Ptarmigan’s Pub from 4:00 PM – 6:00 PM. There will be a $10 fee for guests who would like to participate in the memorial reception only. Pre- registration would be appreciated. For volunteer and event information contact Beth Davis at (401) 282-8876.

About AbilityPlus:
The AbilityPlus program gives opportunity and encouragement to individuals challenged by a disability through the use of skiing as a means of recreation, therapy or personal challenge and achievement. The ability to participate in skiing, and other sports provides an avenue to share a fun and rewarding experience with family and friends.

“Having the courage to get out there and learn to ski, regardless of the individual’s disability, is an incredible inspiration not only to the individual but to everyone involved in the process,” said Corbett. “It is a life altering experience for many of the students and hopefully a life-long lesson that reminds them they can do whatever they set their heart and mind to. My staff of volunteers and I take incredible pride in being a part of this process with students and their families. We encourage anyone that has the slightest interest in being active in the winter to come out and join us.”

Attitash has an array of adaptive ski equipment that provides the necessary medium to allow individuals with different disabilities to get out on the slopes. Individuals with mobility impairments and more severe disabilities will use a mono-ski or bi-ski. The mono-ski is designed to allow skiers to control and ski with their upper body. Amputees or individuals who can ski standing but need a little help with balance can become 3-trackers and 4-trackers using “outriggers”. Outriggers are like ski poles with mini skis on the bottom and are also used by mono and bi-skiers.

Visually impaired skiers are coached through talk and touch and developmentally disabled skiers use normal equipment and are coached through modified teaching techniques.

The AbilityPlus program instructors are primarily volunteers coordinated by Corbett. Pre-registration is encouraged to align the student with appropriate coaches and to ensure the proper equipment is available.

The AbilityPlus program is based at the Adventure Center Lodge at Attitash located directly across the street from the main parking lot. For further information or reservations contact Erik Corbett at (603)374-2688/

Attitash is in the White Mountains of New Hampshire on Rt. 302, outside North Conway in Bartlett. During the winter Attitash offers 70 trails representing 22 miles of skiing and riding on 280 acres. In the summer its guests may enjoy North America’s longest Alpine Slides, waterslides, the Scenic Sky Ride, lift-serviced mountain biking, climbing wall, EuroBungy Trampoline, horseback rides, driving range and Skate Park.