Who doesn’t enjoy a solid high five? The feeling you get as you pass a cheer station and total strangers are cheering you on and high-fiving you left and right. Or when you’re in the terrain park on the mountain and you finally nail that rainbow rail you’ve been working on for hours and your buddies high five you in triumph.
The feeling you get from a solid high five was the inspiration for the High Fives Foundation, a Truckee-based nonprofit founded by Roy Tuscany after he suffered a spinal cord injury in 2006 while training at Mammoth Mountain. After the accident the lower half of Roy’s body was paralyzed. It was through the encouragement of friends and family and hundreds of thousands of high fives that he found himself back on skis and doing what he loves most. On March 25, 2008, after five tries, Roy was finally able step into and buckle his ski boots. He stood in line at Sugar Bowl. He took two runs that day. Check out his video of “The Greatest Day” here.
It was through his experience that the High Fives Foundation became a reality. The mission of High Fives is to raise both money and awareness for athletes who have suffered a life-altering injury while pursuing their dream in the winter action-sports community. Since its inception in 2009, High Fives has helped 21 athletes return to the sports they love.
I first met the guys of High Fives in 2010. I was immediately inspired by what they do, having suffered an injury myself while riding in Colorado. It was a shoulder injury, and by no means life altering, but it did take me away from what I love for a short time. Over the past two years, Sports Basement has been a part of and host to a number of events with High Fives. Our biggest success came in 2011 when we chose High Fives to be one of the benefactors of our Snowfest give back program, where we donate a portion of proceeds from Snowfest – our annual winter kickoff party – to local charities. Through this awesome event, Sports Basement was able to donate more than $3,000 to the High Fives Foundation.
We joined High Fives again at Trains 2012 Freestyle Ski and Snowboard Contest earlier this month. We were stoked to be a partner in this event, which brings both pros and locals to the slopes of Alpine Meadows. We look forward to continuing this partnership, and we can’t wait to see what the guys from High Fives come up with next!