The Waterhawks Ski Team was organized in September of 1958 with 16 charter members who had an interest in promoting ski safety, boating and family fun on the water. Membership increased rapidly over the years. As the team grew larger in member size, shows were put on for public entertainment, and the team eventually started entering show tournaments. Today, The Waterhawks Ski Team is an amateur sports organization that competes in regional and national competitions. The team has grown to over 100 members and took 6th place at nationals in 2013, its highest placing ever.
The Waterhawks purchased Eagle Lake on November 16, 1993 as joint tenants with Rick and Margaret Reuter, their neighbors to the west. This purchase helped the team grow into the club you see today. Recently, the Waterhawks purchased the rest of the lake from the Reuter’s. The Waterhawks are very strong in both Show Skiing and 3-Event Skiing. They have taken the State 3-Event and Show team titles for numerous years. Since 2004, the Show Team has qualified to attend the National Ski Show Championships Division 1 and has finished in the top 10 during many of those years. The 6th place finish at the national tournament in 2013 was the best finish for The Waterhawks or any Iowa based team. In 2009, the Waterhawks won the Midwest Regional Show Ski Tournament, the first in the team’s history, and continued to win that tournament in 2011, 2012, and 2013. The Waterhawks are also very proud to have had members awarded Most Valuable Skiers at National and Regional Show Ski Tournaments. In 2013, Verteran skier, Garth Peter, became the first Waterhawk and first skier from the Midwest region to ever receive the Skip Gilkerson award, the highest possible achievement in Show Skiing.
For many years the team has sponsored a Ski Day for students of the Vinton Braille School to allow them the opportunity to experience the joy of the sport. We have been fortunate to still have one of those students as a regular member of the team, Dean Maurer, along with his parents, Lowell & Darlene. The Waterhawks have also been sponsoring a Ski Day for the Covenant Rehab Unit. Again, the day is devoted to giving the Covenant patients a fun day at the lake with boat rides and any type of skiing adventure they may wish to attempt with assistance from the Waterhawks volunteers.
In October, the Waterhawks host their annual fundraising event, Haunted Halloween Hayride. The Haunted Hayride takes place in the woods behind Eagle Lake. The funds raised from this event go to the capitol improvements at the lake. These are quite visible over the last couple years, most recently the addition of the new marina. There have been many hours of volunteer help along with many of them being extended family and friends of the Waterhawks members. The large improvements on this site include the Concession Stand/Club House, bleachers, outstanding beach, marina, and the “Waterhawks” wall.
We, the Waterhawks, thank you very much for coming to our show and giving us the privilege to entertain you. Sit back….relax….and enjoy!