The Chronicles: Here’s To McBrine

The Chronicles: Here’s To McBrine
Ryan Orabone

Skiing has given me a lot over the years. Good beer, great stories, and most of all – the best friends I have ever had. I attribute most of that to the McBrine Division. On the Facebook page McBrine is described as an intercollegiate ski league in New England, but believe me when I tell you it is much more than just what the words let on.

I have been thinking about how to write this story for quite some time. Putting the memories together in my head to capture McBrine for what it really is; what it means to be a part of this group.

I guess I didn’t really understand fully what skiing was until my freshman year of college came around and I was first introduced to McBrine. I had never seen such a broad spectrum of people all come together with the shared interest – ski or bust – and welcomed complete strangers with open arms to become apart of something bigger.

You had the kids from all over the board: Brandeis, Vassar, Marist, URI, Springfield, Yale, Wesleyan, Wellesley, Castleton, Eastern Nazarene, and a lone ranger from Clarkson.

That was the foundation of what made it so great. Having 150 kids, from literally all walks of life and with the same mission – to shred and have a blast – looking out for one another just doing what we do best.

With McBrine we had our own toast, our own theme song, and most of all our own swagger.

You talk to any of the alumni from McBrine and they will all tell you the same thing… the winter seasons spent on the mountain with everyone were undoubtedly some of the best memories from college. Even if you went 9 months without talking to anyone else – as soon as you clicked in with your long lost ski buddies, you wouldn’t miss a step.

I try to stay in touch with as many McBriners as I can. This year I made it to Montana (thank you Eric), had Anna come all the way back from Abu Dhabi for my birthday, and closed it off with an alumni weekend at Magic Mountain.

Even if there isn’t snow on the ground the beer still stays cold. I have no doubt that once we trade in our roof racks for flip flops McBrine won’t be walking in separate directions. For any of the alumni, we get it. For anyone who is in the league now, I hope you guys are starting to understand what it means to be apart of the group – and based on what I saw from this season, you are well on your way.

Here’s to McBrine!

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