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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

‘There’s something for everyone here’: Mt. Spokane Ski Patrol Ski Swap is this weekend

Thousands of ski and snowboard enthusiasts will swarm the Spokane County Fair & Expo Center this weekend for new and used gear to hit the slopes.

The 59th annual Mt. Spokane Ski Patrol Ski Swap started Friday with a line of people out the Expo Center door to price their skis, snowboards, boots, helmets and other winter items to sell at the swap. Local ski and snowboard shops also brought in thousands of items to the center.

Kristin Whitaker, patrol director at Mt. Spokane Ski Patrol, said the ski swap is the largest in the nation, with 28,000 items ready to be sold.

“It’s an amazing resource for the community that we provide,” Whitaker said.

The swap runs 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 9 to noon Sunday. The entry fee is $5, and children 12 and under get in for free.

The seller gets 80% of each sale, and the all-volunteer nonprofit ski patrol retains 20%. Sellers can pick up their checks or unsold gear from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday at the Spokane County Fairgrounds.

Whitaker said the best selection of items is available Saturday morning, and many items are discounted 25% Sunday. Look for a small red tag for discounted items. Many people show up both days, she said.

Local ski resorts are selling season passes with special discounts at the swap.

“There’s something for everyone here,” Whitaker said.

She said the ski swap requires a huge amount of manpower and hours from volunteers during the event and in the days leading up to it.

“We’re pretty proud of what we do on a volunteer basis and this service that we provide to the community in letting them have this massive selection of winter gear,” Whitaker said.

Rick Matthews and his wife brought multiple sets of skis, poles, boots and other equipment to the swap Friday.

“I’m glad there’s an event like this to make use of what is still serviceable equipment but just stuff that we’re not going to be using, so somebody else could,” Matthews said.

Barry Barnes said he and his wife wanted to sell their five pairs of downhill skis and five pairs of cross-country skis, as well as poles, to clean out their storage space. He said the last time he came to the swap was about 30 years ago.

“It’s been big for as long as I know, and I think it’s well-run and well-organized, and we’re happy that they do it,” Barnes said.