In the Afterglow of Minneapolis with Lumi

Posted by Garrott Kuzzy, Lumi Experiences on Mar 16th 2024

In the Afterglow of Minneapolis with Lumi

In the Afterglow of Minneapolis with Lumi

Still aglow several weeks after the World Cup races in Minneapolis, Lumi guest Neil from Massachusetts was inspired to write about his long weekend at the World Cup, which finally arrived four years after the 2020 Minneapolis World Cup was canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

If you’d like to experience a FIS Cross Country World Cup or World Championships with Lumi, 2025 is going to be a big year: kick off the New Year in Italy at the Tour de Ski or join us in Norway for the Trondheim World Championships (only in 2025!). If you can’t get enough cheering for your favorite athletes, you could always pair World Champs with the Holmenkollen World Cup or participate in a Norwegian ski race yourself on the Norway-Birken trip!

The World Cup trips are some of our most popular and filling quickly. There are only two weeks left to receive the early booking discount of $300 when you save your spot before March 31. Reach out to see the trip itinerary and book!

By Neil Goldberg, after the 2024 Minneapolis World Cup Trip

During three glorious days in February, the World Cup of Cross Country Skiing came to Minneapolis. For many who experienced that remarkable weekend, the afterglow lingers.

With Lumi Experiences guiding our group, we joined approximately 30,000 fans to witness the world’s best racers. Many of us had planned to join this trip in March 2020, but one week before the races, Covid-19 shut them down.

Many variables led to the spectacular success of the World Cup in Minneapolis this February. In the 23 years since a World Cup race was last held in the States, the U.S. team has become a leading power on par with the Swedes, Norwegians and others. This weekend marked the emergence of the US men too: with 23 year old Gus Schumacher of Alaska winning gold in the 10k distance event.

Next, the weather gods smiled on Wirth Park in Minneapolis. Three days before the event, the course was a mass of brown grass, with only a ribbon of white snow, trucked in to build the race-course. And then, 72 hours before race-weekend, six inches of new snow coated the park, which not only enhanced the race-track, but also created a beautiful winter scene.

Perhaps the most significant element of this World Cup was the role played by hometown hero Jessie Diggins. It was clear just how special this was for her, and for those who had helped nurture her competitive dreams.

And the fans! There was wild cheering for all countries and all competitors, which so many of the racers appreciated. Fans roamed the sidelines of the course, encouraging any racer who skied by. Veteran Italian skier Frederico Pellegrino expressed it well: “When we compete in Europe, the fans cheer only for their own country. Here…everyone cheered for everyone!” And legendary Norwegian skier Hans Høeflot-Klaebo: “This was amazing. We have to come back here again!”

A few (unsolicited) words about Lumi Experiences. Garrott Kuzzy, who founded Lumi in 2018, gathered two first-class guides to shepherd our group. Holly and Oumar outdid themselves, and made this long-time XC skier an immediate fan. On Friday, after the pros had finished their prep and before the weekend of racing, our group got to ski the actual race course.

Lumi arranged other wonderful experiences that enhanced the weekend: a private screening of the just released movie, “Kikkan,” grandstand access at finish line, special talks with US team wax techs & trainers, and a visit with author and activist Bill McKibben at our farewell dinner.

Nothing in my life-long love of XC skiing came close to what I experienced and felt during the WC weekend. To see American stars Jessie, Rosie & Julia up close; to watch the races just feet from the world’s elites, and to be part of the wild, full-throated cheering of the thousands of fans…all added up to create a lifetime memory. For our Lumi guides, Holly & Oumar, and Lumi founder Garrett Kuzzy, my gratitude runs deep.

And I know the rest of our gang feels the same way. My wife Andrea and I are already talking about where we might go with Lumi. So…to my fellow Nordorks and to the pros at Lumi: see you soon on another Lumi trip!

2025 is going to be a big year for the World Cup and World Championships! Check out Lumi trips to the Tour de Ski, Trondheim World Champs, and Holmenkollen World Cup!

We would love to hear from you:! Reach out to see a detailed trip itinerary, reserve your space before March 31 to receive the $300 / person early booking discount, and we’re always happy to answer any questions.

Greetings from the Holmenkollen plateau above Oslo,

Garrott Kuzzy