September 4, 2006 – Snowmobile Report

Hidden value in your store
The back room of your dealership may have more value than you think.
According to the new book “Vintage Snowmobilia” by Jon Bertolino, vintage dealer signs and display material can fetch prices of more than $1,000. One 1960s Arctic Cat sign is valued up to $1,500.
The book contains more than 600 images and is a price guide to snowmobile collectables. In addition to the dealer merchandise, the book lists toys, helmets, soft goods, oil cans and patches. More unusual collectables include a Corn Flakes box with a snowmobile promotion, records with snowmobile tunes and quarts of oil worth up to $100. The book is 160 pages, and sells for $39.95 at www.enthusiastbooks.com.
Books Released
Two more snowmobile-related books became available this summer. The “Illustrated Guide to Snowmobile Racing,” by Linda and David Aksomitis, was released in July. The book gives a historic overview of snowmobile racing and race machines, as well as a guide to the various disciplines. Rules and records are included. It sells for $29.95 from www.enthusiastbooks.com. Craig Nicholson, known to many for his Intrepid Snowmobiler columns distributed in the United States and Canada, has compiled his articles into a book called “Canada’s Best Snowmobiling — Your Ultimate Travel Guide.”?Nicholson updated 36 of his saddlebag tour stories, added maps and included practical tips in the 240-page volume. The book is sponsored, in part, by Bombardier Recreational Products Inc. It sells for $39.95 plus shipping at www.intrepidsnowmobiler.com.
It’s Show Time
The fall snowmobile consumer show season will officially kick off in the beginning of September and go through November. Here’s a list of major events, including two organized by AGI Events, whose parent company also owns Powersports Business.

  • Sept. 9-10, Haydays Grass Drags And Swap Meet, Forest Lake, Minn., www.snobarons.com
  • Sept. 23-24, Snowmobile USA Show & Sale, Grayslake, Ill., www.SnowmobileUSA.com.
  • Oct. 6-8, Big East Powersports Show, Syracuse, N.Y., www.agievents.com
  • Oct. 7-8, Rocky Mountain Snowmobile Expo, Denver, Colo., www.iei-expos.com
  • Oct 20-22, Snowmobile USA Show & Sale, Milwaukee, Wis., www.SnowmobileUSA.com.
  • Oct. 21-22, Washington Snowmobile Expo And Swap Meet, Puyallup, Wash., www.wssa.us
  • Nov. 3-5, Snowmobile USA Show & Sale, Novi, Mich., www.SnowmobileUSA.com.
  • Nov. 9-11, Snowmobile USA Show & Sale, Green Bay, Wis., www.SnowmobileUSA.com.
  • Nov. 10-12, Minneapolis/St. Paul Powersports Show, Minneapolis, Minn., www.agievents.com
    Five Join Polaris Hall of Fame
    Five new inductees are part of the Polaris Hall of Fame. The inductees include:

  • Ed Skomoroh, a company officer from 1982 through his retirement in 2000. As vice president of sales and marketing, he introduced numerous innovative programs and practices, including the company’s “Snow Check” snowmobile retailing program.
  • Jim Bernat, a 42-year employee who held a variety of manufacturing and product development positions, including serving as field test manager and snowmobile engineering quality manager. He also had a legendary snowmobile racing career and won the Eagle River World Championship in 1975.
  • Bucky’s Outdoors, a Polaris dealership in Pinedale, Wyoming, since 1975. Founded by Bucky Neely and now owned and operated by his son, Gary Neely, the dealership has thrived because of its exceptional customer service and technical expertise, especially with deep snow snowmobiles.
  • Bristow’s Polaris and Victory, a Polaris dealership since 1981 that has set numerous sales records under the leadership of founder Mike Bristow. With his ability to spot market trends and stock the right product, the St. Cloud, Minn., dealership has consistently been among the top-selling Polaris dealerships.
  • The Cass Screw Machine Products Company, an industry leader in precision machining and the longest continual supplier to Polaris. Cass began supplying Polaris with components for snowmobiles in 1959 and today the Brooklyn Center, Minn., company builds hundreds of components for all Polaris product lines.
    Polaris Industries’ Hall of Fame was created during the company’s 50th anniversary in 2004.
    Haydays, September 9-10
    The 40th annual Haydays Grass Drags and Swap Meet is scheduled for Sept. 9-10 in Forest Lake, Minn. Often referred to as “the official start of winter for the snowmobile market,” the event last year attracted more than 40,000 visitors, 140 companies and hundreds of racers and swap enthusiasts from across the country.
    Organized by the Sno-Barons Snowmobile Club, the first race was in November of 1967. The multi-acre swap meet was added in 1980.
    The event generates the money used by the Sno-Barons for a variety of things, including the Sno Barons Grant Program.
    Organizers say all dealer sites have been filled for the event. Dealer information packets were not mailed this year, but must be picked up on-site from Sept. 4-8. psb

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