Mad-City Ski Team Honored at USA Water Ski Annual Awards Reception

In 2008, Mad-City won both the Wisconsin State and Division 1 Show Ski National Championships for the third consecutive year and fourth time in the past five years. To further honor their achievements, the team was selected for two awards at USA Water Ski’s Annual Awards Reception, held in Winter Haven, FL on Saturday, January 24.  Not only was Mad-City selected as the National Show Ski Association’s 2008 Team of the Year, but it was also chosen as USA Water Ski’s 2008 Team of the Year.  This is the first time that the latter award was given solely to a show ski team.  Mad-City was USA Water Ski’s Co-Team of the Year in 2007.  It really exemplifies the growing community of show skiing and brings to light the tremendous effort put forth by all teams in the creation of their shows.

Kristen Block & Matt Baumler Accepting the Award for USA Water Ski's 2008 Team of the Year for the Mad-City Ski Team
Kristen Block & Matt Baumler Accepting the Award for
USA Water Ski’s 2008 Team of the Year for the Mad-City Ski Team

Serving as the 2008 Co-Show Directors, Kristen Block and Matt Baumler had the privilege of representing the team at this year’s event.  Held at the Admirals Inn, directly across the street from Cyrpess Gardens, they were truly in a skier’s paradise.  The evening began with a slide show highlighting the various water ski events of the past season and was followed up with a full buffet style dinner and finally the awards presentation.  “It was an incredible honor to be representing show skiing in a room otherwise filled with 3-event, collegiate, wakeboard, kneeboard, ski racing, barefoot and hydrofoil athletes,” said Baumler.  Block noted that there was definitely an air of curiosity surrounding show skiing.  Several of the athletes were full of questions about what they do and how they do it.  Show skiing is truly a team sport, as was illustrated by their tales of 36 person pyramids, 21 girl ballet lines and 50 person big acts, all being pulled together with top notch boat driving, sound, costuming, pick up boats and dock crews.

Awards were first given out by the individual sport discipline’s organization.  It was here that Mad-City was named the National Show Ski Association’s Team of the Year.  After each discipline named its respective individuals, teams and honorees, the awards selected by USA Water Ski were then given out.  Signifying it’s prestige, USA Water Ski’s Team of the Year was the final award given for the evening.  Being chosen as Team of the Year from amongst all other sport disciplines brought to culmination for the team a year’s worth of hard work, dedication and a ton of fun.  Winning both Wisconsin State and Nationals has made a name for Mad-City within the show skiing world, but now they are being recognized by the larger population of water skiing in general.  Congratulations to the entire team and best of luck in 2009!!!(Story by Kristen Block & Matt Baumler)

Kristen Block and Matt Baumler with Sandy Shraft, Sherm Shraft & Tom Galoni
Kristen Block and Matt Baumler with Sandy Schraft,
Sherm Schraft and Tom Ghiloni

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