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Hans “Peppi” Teichner

Hall of Fame Class of 1967

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Hans “Peppi” Teichner was a noted professional at Sun Valley, Idaho and won the Diamond Sun Award. Later in his career he contributed enormously to developing interest in skiing among junior skiers in Michigan.

Hans “Peppi” Teichner was born in Germany in 1908. A man of many talents and achievements, he was closely associated with skiing throughout his life. Peppi was a member of the German National Team for eight years and was recognized as one of the top ski professionals at Sun Valley where he won the Diamond Sun Award. After serving as a non-commissioned officer in the 10th Mountain Division during World War II, Teichner was involved in the early development of Aspen as a ski resort.

In April, 1948 he moved to Leland, Michigan to manage the Sugar Loaf Winter Sports project. A man of inexhaustible energy, Peppi was responsible for overall supervision and development. This included laying out the ski area and constructing tows, running the ski school, organizing ski races, coaching, promoting skiing and publicizing Sugar Loaf.

Recognizing the need for trained ski instructors, he researched and developed standards and procedures for certifying instructors and presented these rules in 1955 to the Central United States Ski Association convention in Traverse City where they were adopted immediately. Peppi was one of the first certified Central United States Ski Association ski instructors and one of the instructors and examiners of candidates for certification.

Teichner was always particularly interested in youth. While he was coach of the Leelanau School’s Ski Team and director of the ski schools in Traverse City he developed a number of outstanding junior racers. The enthusiasm Peppi generated was directly responsible for the “explosion” of interest in skiing in Lower Michigan. Many of the era’s best junior racers began their career under the programs he started, most of which he ran without pay. His work on the State of Michigan Department of Education Athletic Committee was responsible for making skiing a sanctioned sport in Michigan high schools and for the first statewide junior competition. He can be credited with originating ski competition in Michigan schools.

Peppi loved the sport and everyone who participated in it. Young boys and girls were his special interest but he also conducted evening ski classes in Traverse City under the sponsorship of the Northwestern Michigan College Adult Education program as well as ski classes for children under the sponsorship of the Record Eagle newspaper. Peppi can rightfully be called the “founder” of skiing in Lower Michigan.

Hans “Peppi’ Teichner was elected to the U.S. National Ski Hall of Fame in 1967.

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