"Where the history of snowmobiling comes to life"
Shrine To A Legend - The Hetteen Cup written by Steve Pierce

Shrine To A Legend - The Hetteen Cup written by Steve Pierce

Sno Pro racing was being restructured after its inaugural season and professional Drivers Circuit racer Larry Rugland of Polaris was the first recipient of the Hetteen Cup in December of 1974. All to follow would be Sno Pro drivers. Winners inscriptions continue in 1975 with Larry Coltom of Arctic Cat, Doug Hayes in 1976 on a Ski Doo, Brad Hulings of Polaris in 1977, Hulings on a Scorpion in 1978 and Arctic's Jim Dimmerman in 1979. The winner's plate is not historically correct. Hulings actually won in 1976 on a Polaris, and Hayes on a Ski Doo in 1977. Their names were switched in error. Piloting an Arctic-backed Scorpion, Hulings again captured the cup in 1980 but his name was never added to the list. Arctic Enterprises and its Scorpion subsidiary went bankrupt in 1981, making 1980 the final year the Hetteen Cup was awarded. As the proud heritage of Arctic Cat was sold off, the once coveted trophy became lost in the shuffle. Much of the inventory and licensing rights became the property of Certified Parts Corporation of Janesville, Wisconsin. Some equipment was purchased by a team of investors, including Arctic founder Hetteen. Taking the name of the former Arctic distributor, Arctco, this newly formed company helped Cat claw its way back from the grave, scratching out a comeback for the 1984 season. Neilsen Distributing International, of Chicago, Illinois, acquired most of the contents of the racing department, competing with Arctic products during the shutdown. For more than 20 years, the Hetteen Cup was lost to the world, buried and forgotten in an Illinois warehouse. Nearly scrapped, the hallowed artifact was discovered and returned to the Hetteen family in 2004. In 2007, race promoters from Glenwood, Minnesota, sought to resurrect the Hetteen Cup tradition at their seventh annual vintage snowmobile rally. With the original cup on hand, Edgar and C.J. Ramstad presented the victor, Mike Meagher of Grey Eagle, Minnesota, with a similar, sized down replica. The new cup is a traveling trophy, awarded yearly. The Hetteen Cup was always transported in a large, specifically designed hardwood box that eerily resembled a coffin. Slated for display at the 2008 Old Snowmobile Expo in grand Rapids, Minnesota, the dry wood and old glue combined for tragedy as the venerable trophy snapped into two pieces while being placed in the box!. Other repairs were also needed, and the cup was refurbished by Steven Pierce. One day the Hetteen Cup will come to rest in a museum, a memorial not only to the spirit of competition and the names etched upon the winner's plate, but also a tribute to all whose paths have crisscrossed snowmobile history. It's an enduring symbol embodying the dreams of pioneers whose crude designs became the building blocks for a billion dollar industry, and a salute to adventurers like Ralph Plaisted, whose North Pole exploits gained international exposure for the snowmobile. First and foremost, the Hetteen Cup is a shrine to the man whose name it bears, his face emblazoned in bronze upon it, one who has lent his life to the snowmobile and the people who ride them, the true and utmost snowmobile legend, Edgar E. Hetteen. Thanks to Brad Hulings and Dave Thompson for information and insight.

Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum News Release-2023 On September 22, 2023 the Michigan Arts and Culture Council (MACC) in conjunction with the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) announced it would be generously awarding the Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum in Naubinway an $8750 grant for operational support during 2024. MACC uses a peer review process to award grants. More than 700 organizations across the state applied for funding. Each grant application is competitively judged; awardees are chosen to ensure Michigan residents and visitors have access to the most authentic aspects of local arts and culture. Organizations receiving a grant award from MACC/NEA are required to match those funds with other public or private dollars. The Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum receives a great deal of donated monetary support through its memberships and visitors and plans to use these funds to match the MACC grant award. There are 141 active museum members not including lifetime members and more than 7000 visitors just last year.

The museum has plans to bring more local art-related activities to our conference room and develop a program for groups with special needs. This support will go toward the cost of wages and advertising for these activities. On Sept 20, 2019, The Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum was awarded a grant of $12,500 for Operational Support from the State of Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs (MCACA) and the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA – ART WORKS). The grant was awarded through the MCACA peer review process and was one of 561 applications to compete for MCACA fiscal year 2019 funding. The grant requires a 1:1 match and helped the museum leverage the $12,500 of support from its annual income and the many donations from supporters. In particular the museum has received grants from the Graymont Community Economic Development Fund and the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians. It has also received significant donations from the Antique Snowmobile Club of America, The Midwest Vintage Snowmobile Shows, Inc., many snowmobile clubs, several recreational and snowmobile shows, the museum’s internal $1,000.00 Challenge, and many museum members. The grant funds will be applied to museum operating costs. Applicable costs include internal operations, marketing, travel to shows within the State of Michigan and cost of employees. The MCACA peer review process allows for each grant applicant to be competitively considered by a panel of in-state and out-of-state arts and culture professionals. This ensures the taxpayers, who support this project through legislative appropriations, and all other visitors or residents in Michigan will have access to the highest quality arts and cultural experiences. A complete list of grant awards around the state is available by contacting MCACA at (517) 241-4011, or by visiting the MCACA website at
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Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum
P.O. Box 2
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