For many years, the thought of organizing a Polish ski club had been on the minds of those Polish skiers who met on the American slopes and mountains. The date of establishment of the Tatry Ski Club was agreed upon as March 25, 1973, when on the initiative of one of the founders, a meeting of a group of 20 Polish ski enthusiasts was held.
Tatry Ski Club was chosen at the meeting, as the official name of the organization. Under the leadership of the vice-president of the Polish Highlanders of America, a board was chosenAn important function of the board was to create rules and regulations (with minor changes that exist currently) and establish fundamental areas of the club’s activities. In August of 1973, the board of the Tatry Ski Club met with the committee of the Polish Highlandersof America. The rules and regulations of Tatry Ski Club differed from those of the Polish Highlanders, which caused delays in their initiation period to become a part of the organization. With the help of people associated with the club, the Tatry Ski Club was registered in the state of Illinois as an independent organization. From the very begining, the club was active in various sports. Winter activities called the “Club Cup” were established right from the start. Later, track events and tennis tournaments were added to the club program.
A point system was developed to allow the sportsman of the year to be determined. In 1980, the club also added cross country skiing into the club’s sports activities. With the help of the Tatry Ski Club committee and under the leadership of its founders, the club dynamically grew to around 100 members in the late 1970’s. In 1980, a new board was elected but was not effective in carrying out its obligations. The original founder of the club resigned as the president after 7 years of devotion, but stayed involved and helped the new president overcome this difficult time. A new board was appointed and the club’s efforts were seen in results, in the following year (1982), the Tatry Ski Club team won first place in the Grand Marnier Challenge. In the same year, the Tatry Ski Club became a member of the Chicago Metropolitan Ski Council (CMSC) and from this time successfully competes against other clubs belonging to the CMSC. In 1983, the club celebrated its 10th anniversary. Shortly after the anniversary banquet, a new board was elected and another one of the club’s founders was elected as the new president. After the elections, the club divided because some members were not satisfied with the outcome of the election. These members left the club forming their own, called Eagles. Thanks to the determination and persistence of the president and the remaining members, the club began to strengthen. Again, the Nordic events developed. New events like ski jumping were introduced to the club.
Many new members joint the club and began to have great success in ski jumping. One of the new members won first and second place in the USA Ski Jumping Competition (Jr. Class). A great development in the Tatry Ski Club was during the years of 1987 and 1988. The newly appointed president discovered a few great competitors who proved to be not only the best in the Tatry Ski Club, but in the whole CMSC, which has over 90 different clubs. The organizational success should also be mentioned. Due to the commitment of the club’s president and vice-president, Tatry Ski Club joined the Polish Highlanders Association as group #47 in 1988. Although the club’s presidents changed every couple of years, the club prospered immensely. A few great ski racers joined the club and every year, fifty skiers compete regularly in CMSC races winning about 100 medals in a season. In 1989, the joined teams of the Tatry Ski Club and the Eagles earned the greatest success in the Tatry’s history by winning the Jeep Ski Club Challenge. In 1993, the Tatry Ski Club placed no more than third place in CMSC competitions. Due to over 25 years of hard work and dedication of the sportsmen and board members, TatrySki Club gained fame and a good image in the Polish sport community in Chicago and North America.