WHITEFISH – The 20th annual Nate Chute event is this weekend, March 16 and 17, at Whitefish Mountain resort, marking 20 years of suicide prevention and awareness.
In August 1999, 18-year-old Nate Chute took his own life. According to the American Association for Suicidology, Montana youth suicide rates are double the nation’s average.
An avid snowboarder, Nate’s parents set up a banked slalom race in his memory at Whitefish Mountain Resort. All the money raised goes back to the Nate Chute Foundation, dedicated to reducing suicide through prevention and education.
Nate’s dad Terry says, this year, fundraising reached over $20,000. People come from all over the world to attend the second longest running snowboard banked slalom event in the United States.
Terry says the race feels like a big family reunion and can’t imagine how happy Nate would be at its success.
“I think he would be awestruck. I don’t think he would ever imagine that he had this many friends and this amount of support,” Chute says.
Winners of the event go home with up to $400 in cash and free snowboard equipment.
The event is still looking for volunteers. If interested in helping out, you can reach HillaryH@skiwhitefish.com.