This post was originally featured on JohnnyKlister.com back in the day. Then JohnnyKlister switched servers, everything went in to the ether and I couldn’t even find it on the Internet Archive (believe me, I tried). However, thanks to an unnamed source (who may or may not be related to Johnny Klister—it may even be Johnny him/herself), we have the original post here.
Do note that this is not endorsed by BirkieGuide.com (except for the part where they call us—well, the original BirkieGuide posted on Fasterskier—remarkably good) and that several of the businesses mentioned may no longer exist.
Originally posted on JohnnyKlister.com, February, 2011:
Yeah, yeah, yeah, we get it: It’s fun to laugh at the Birkie frenzy, and there are a lot of people who take it waaay too seriously, but it’s still a pretty sweet race. At the very least, it draws around 7500 people; if you’re in the elite wave, you’re like a god. Winning this year pays out $7500, and then you are GOD (at least, in the Midwest).
A lot has already been written about training for the race, waxing for the race, warming up for the race, doing the race, etc. This: http://fasterskier.com/2011/02/birkie-guide-v-2-011/ is remarkably good. And yet, post-post-race, there’s not much being written. And so, your guide to post-Birkie activities:
– Immediately after finish: Get your medal, change clothes and head to the Moccasin Bar. It’s the mint-green one within sight of McDonald’s, which you no doubt will visit after multiple pitchers of cheap Leinie’s. Back-up site: Good Knights – basically next door, but with even more camo jackets and Nugent on the jukebox. Warning: In Wisconsin, if you’re under 21 but with a parent or legal guardian, you can drink at bars – don’t assume they’re old enough to date just because they’re carrying a pint.
– Lunch: If you haven’t hit up McDonald’s … who are we kidding; of course you did. Other good options are that gyro place (it’s currently named both Yanni’s and Tony’s) a couple of blocks north of the Moccasin. The El Dorado on County Road B is fairly cheap with big portions of decent Mexican; the medium beers are pints, the large is about a quart (about half-mile from downtown, but you get to see the gigantic fiberglass fish and Lumberjack Bowl on the way). [This may have since closed. But you don’t really need that much beer, do you?]
– Nap: You should. Really.
– Dinner: If you’re up in Cable, try to force your way into Rivers Eatery (at the Ideal Market). Really, really good pizza – and Bjorn Daehlie ate here. Bjorn. Daehlie. Otherwise, the Ranch Supper Club is good, as is the Thirsty Minnow (though, as a warning, will be jammed).
– Party: The classic is, and always will be, at the Sawmill in Seeley. The opening band [in 2011, at least] (5-9pm) features Brad Nelson (formerly of NMU, Gitchi Gummi and St. Scholastica) on drums. There will be snowmobilers there, but even though skiers out-number them, you should not try to fight any. If you finished in the top-10, get ready to beat … errr … fend off admirers (after accepting their beers).
If not …
– Late night: Phipps Tavern. It’s a fair bet that most/all of the industry people will be here, so if you broke a ski, interrupting their lap-dance is the best time to get that warrantied.
– Late, late, late night: There will be Russian, Norwegian and Swiss skiers in the area. They have fancy jackets. Just make sure your teammates don’t rat you out.