One man celebrating a milestone at the Badger State Games - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

One man celebrating a milestone at the Badger State Games


76-year-old Bernie Palm has been competing at the Badger State Games for 20 years.

"I started at age 42, and I started racing at about 45," said Palm.

Palm moved to Wisconsin from Germany about three decades ago. He now lives in Brookfield.

He said after moving to the states, he decided it was time to start hitting the slopes.

"I decided if I'm going to live in a cold climate, I'm going to enjoy it," said Palm.

Although he's had some close calls, he said it's all about learning from mistakes and challenging yourself.

"Last year, I had a concussion, I hit a gate at a pretty high speed, spun around and fell backwards," said Palm.

Palm has received some recognition for his skill, even making the front page in a Milwaukee paper.

"It's great," said Palm.

He hasn't been skiing alone.

"He's a speedy old guy," said Friend, John Wothe of Wauwatosa.

His friend, John Wothe, has competed with him at the Badger State Games for about eight years.


"He's always trying to figure out, looking for the tenth of a second, hundredth of a second that he can save," said Wothe.

Workers said about 100 people took part in the skiing competition.

They said Palm isn't just marking a milestone at 20 years, he's also the oldest competitor in the event.

"The competition is going to be kind of easy because I'm the only one in my age group, and the ranks get kind of thin at my age," said Palm.

He said he plans on keeping up the tradition as long as he can.

"It's addictive and that's what I call healthcare," said Palm.

Palm said he's happy to be celebrating the milestone on the slopes at Granite Peak.

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