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Get to Know Your 2022-23 Hoofer Council

It’s no accident that the Wisconsin Hoofers is the oldest and largest student organization on the University of Wisconsin–Madison campus. Many things have changed in the decades since the club’s founding in 1931, but a shared love of the outdoors has remained as strong as ever.

One of the greatest things about Hoofers is that its six outdoors-centric clubs – Mountaineering, Outing, Riding, Sailing, Scuba and Ski and Snowboard (SnS) – are open to all Wisconsin Union members. This includes UW–Madison students, who are temporary Union members during their time at the university. Yep, you read that correctly! Anyone with a Union membership, regardless of experience level or university affiliation, can join a Hoofer club (or clubs, plural) that piques their interest. 

Rail Jam, part of the annual Winter Carnival, is a beloved event put on by the Hoofer Ski and Snowboard Club.

Not a Wisconsin Union member yet? Click here to become a member and join a Hoofer club today!

Through Hoofers, members gain a greater appreciation for outdoor recreation, build a community of outdoors-lovers and enhance their leadership skills. Hoofer Council, the governing body for all Hoofers, provides great opportunities for members to become leaders and to help make the outdoors more accessible to all.

Hoofer Council is made up of six club leaders, four vice presidents, four officers and one council president who all work together to keep Hoofer clubs running smoothly. These individuals strive to share their wisdom and enthusiasm for outdoor recreation during club meetings and events.

We are thrilled to introduce you to this year’s Hoofer Council:

It’s smooth sailing when you join the Hoofer Sailing Club!

These talented individuals have many exciting things in store for the upcoming year. We can’t wait to see what they’ll accomplish!

To give you a glimpse into all the outdoorsy adventures that you’ll embark on when you join a Hoofer club, we spoke to Outing Club President Lily Mass and SnS Club President Delaney Dykman about their time in Hoofers. 

When did you first join Hoofers? Have you held any other leadership positions before this year?

Lily Mass (LM): I joined the Outing Club my freshman year after taking a Basecamp trip the summer before college. (Basecamp was a wilderness-based orientation with Outdoor UW.) My trip leader and a former coworker were both involved in the club and convinced me to join—the rest is history! I’ve held the roles of social chair, instruction chair and VP of instruction, the last one being a position I created, then filled, last fall. 

Delaney Dykman (DD): I joined SnS and the Alpine Ski Team my sophomore year, because I wanted to meet new people during COVID-19. I applied for the VP of events position the following year, hoping to get more involved in the club, and I got it!

What is one of your favorite Hoofer Club memories?

LM: My favorite Outing Club memories are the May 1 lake jumps. The annual lake jump signifies the turnover of the executive board, and I love it because it fosters feelings of community, accomplishment and achievement for all of our hard work over the year. It’s the perfect way to end the semester and pass on the torch to the new club president.

DD: My favorite memory with SnS is attending Battle on Barnyard, a freestyle event that takes place in the spring at Tyrol Basin. It was great to celebrate the end of the season with lots of members and beautiful weather while watching some awesome freestyle skiers.

How long have you been interested in the outdoors? 

When you join Outing Club, you have the opportunity to embark on local or national backpacking trips.

LM: I’ve always loved spending time outside. As a kid, I spent countless hours building fairy houses out of twigs and moss, relaxing at the beach, and camping at Camp Manito-Wish in Boulder Junction, Wis., where I now work as a counselor. At camp, I learned to appreciate the outdoors in an intentional way, which changed my view on what spending time outdoors can mean. I’m happy that I can promote that same passion for nature in others through the Outing Club.

DD: I’ve been interested in the outdoors ever since I can remember. I started skiing at a young age and began competitively racing shortly after that. My parents have always pushed me to spend time outside and appreciate everything that nature has to offer. I feel like I’ve done a good job at doing that so far!

Why should someone join the Outing Club and SnS?

LM: You should join the Outing Club if you want to become part of a tight-knit community that works to provide opportunities to further your competency in camping and enjoying the outdoors!

DD: SnS strives to make skiing and snowboarding accessible to everyone. We provide lessons and rental gear at nearby Tyrol Basin; trips during winter and spring breaks; opportunities to join freestyle, alpine and nordic ski teams…the list goes on and on! One thing I didn’t realize prior to joining SnS is that the club is big enough that everyone can find a place within it that fits their wants and needs.

How would you describe your club in three words?

LM: Adaptable, open and silly! Our main goal is to open the doors of camping to anyone who’s interested. We aim to adapt our programming to the different experiences and knowledge our members bring to the club, and we want to ensure that everyone’s having fun along the way!

DD: Keeping the stoke! This means ensuring that the enthusiasm and thrill that we all feel about skiing and snowboarding lives on throughout the entire club. 

If someone’s interested in learning more about the Outing Club or SnS, what’s the best way for them to get involved?

LM: Come to the Outing Club’s general meetings in the Mendota Lodge every Tuesday at 7 p.m.! It’s a great way to meet other members, hear about the awesome trips going out, and learn new skills. I’ll be leading these meetings throughout the year, so please come and say hello!

DD: The best way to learn about SnS is to email me at sns@hoofers.org, attend my office hours from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Mondays in the Hoofers office, or follow us on Instagram (@hoofer_sns). We have plenty of events in the fall, winter and spring – and everyone is welcome!

Congratulations to Lily, Delaney and the rest of the 2022-23 Hoofer Council!

Joining a new club can feel intimidating at first, but we assure you that when you show up to a Hoofer club meeting, you’ll immediately feel at home with our incredible members and leaders. Drop by one of our weekly meetings and experience for yourself why the Wisconsin Hoofers remains a timeless tradition on the UW–Madison campus.

  • Mountaineering Club meetings: Mendota Lodge in Memorial Union, Thursdays at 7 p.m.
  • Outing Club meetings: Mendota Lodge, Tuesdays at 7 p.m.
  • Riding Club meetings: Mendota Lodge, third Wednesday of every month at 7 p.m.
  • Sailing Club meetings: Chart Room in Memorial Union, Mondays at 6 p.m.
  • Scuba Club meetings: Mendota Lodge, one Wednesday per month at 7 p.m.
  • Ski and Snowboard meetings: TBD

Learn more about the Wisconsin Hoofers at hoofers.org. Keep calm and hoof on!

Author: Abby Synnes

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