Cal Conniff had a distinguished career in the American ski industry, culminating in 16 years as President and Executive Director of the National Ski Areas Association. Following his retirement Conniff’s energy and ski industry knowledge benefited the New England Ski Museum, which Conniff served as a director, president, and founder of the Hannes Schneider Meister Cup Race. In recognition of those contributions, in 2006 the ski museum designated its existing grant awards the Cal Conniff Grant program. Cal Conniff passed away on January 8, 2021, one month shy of his 91st birthday.
In 2020, for the 15th year, the New England Ski Museum’s Cal Conniff Grant program allocated $3,000 in grant funding to individuals or organizations consistent with the Museum’s mission to preserve the history of skiing and winter sports.
The grants are funded with proceeds of the Hannes Schneider Meister Cup Race, held each March at Cranmore Mountain Resort in North Conway, New Hampshire.
In March, 2020 Cal Conniff Grant were awarded to these groups:
The JETS Foundation, Thornton, NH: $500. The Junior Enrichment Through Sports program provides affordable skiing and snowboarding at Waterville Valley for area youth in grades 1 through 8.
The Moretown School Parent Teacher Organization, Moretown, VT:$500. The PTO funds their small winter sports program that offers skiing, snowboarding and snowshoeing programs to students at the Moretown Elementary School.
Ski Like a Girl Program, Yawgoo Valley, RI: $500 to support their program that encourages girls to learn to ski with the help of Yawgoo’s female ski coaches.
Franconia Ski Club, Franconia, NH: $500 to create a History Wall in the soon-to-be-completed Mittersill Performance Center at the base of the Taft Training Slope at Cannon Mountain.
Because the grants are funded from proceeds of the Hannes Schneider Meister Cup Race, which will not be held in 2021 due to the pandemic, the grant program will not be offered in 2021.
In November 2021 a call for applications for the 2022 Cal Conniff Grants will be posted on the Museum’s website. The deadline for applications will be in mid-February, 2022.
The application process is kept purposely informal. Applicants submit a letter that outlines a description of the project, its goals, the audience that it will impact, and the dollar amount requested. Supporting information for the application should include:
- Organization’s description or individual’s resume, including mailing address;
- two letters supporting the merits of the individual or program;
- one representative photograph for publication if the applicant is successful.
Questions or application materials may be e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to:
Cal Conniff Grant Committee
New England Ski Museum
135 Tramway Drive
Franconia, NH 03580-4403
The Cal Conniff Grant Program is open to individuals, organizations and educational institutions with an interest in winter sports, such as Alpine and Nordic skiing, snowboarding and snowshoeing. Any group that can demonstrate the need for funding for education related to snow sports, preservation of skiing history, or encouraging participation in skiing and riding is eligible.
The selection process is conducted by the Museum’s Grant Committee on an objective and nondiscriminatory basis. The committee judges applications based on the following:
- the proposal’s contribution to the preservation of ski or snowboard history;
- the extent to which the project encourages skiing or snowboarding participation;
- the importance of the grant to the success of the proposed program;
- the educational value of the proposal;
- the applicant’s degree of organization in the pursuit of the project.