According to the Boyne company history: In 1947, Everett Kircher, of Detroit, frustrated by a lack of skiing opportunity in Michigan, bought some hilly land near Boyne Falls for $1. He moved his family north, leaving his job in his parent’s Studebaker dealership and began clearing slopes. He bought a used single place chairlift from Sun Valley (in 1936 it had been the first chairlift ever constructed) for $2000 and installed it in time to open the Boyne Mountain Ski Club on New Years Day, 1948. The gears on the lift froze up the first day and they had to shovel snow out of the woods onto the slopes, but they made it through the first season. That summer, Kircher modified the single place chair into a double place chair.
Kircher was a master of marketing and hired Stein Eriksen, gold medalist at the 1952 Olympics, to head up the ski school. Eriksen soon left for Sugarbush Resort in Vermont, but recommended Austrian Othmar Schneider, another Olympic gold medalist, to replace him. Schneider brought in highly trained Austrian ski instructors and established the tradition of Austrian Ski Schools at Boyne resorts.
Boyne Mountain is still operating as one of Michigan’s premier ski resorts. If you have information about the early days of skiing at Boyne Mountain, please post it or send it to us via the directions on the About MILSAP page.