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    Tiger Shaw is helping heat up New England’s snow sports scene

    He greenlighted the US Ski and Snowboard Association’s involvement in Big Air at Fenway, and helped bring World Cup ski racing back to the region.

    Boston-02/12/16 The freestyle ski World Cup finals of mens and ladies during the Big Air at Fenway Park. Klaus Finne from Norway takes off from the start. Boston Globe staff photo by John Tlumacki(sports)
    John Tlumacki/Globe staff/File
    A participant in the freestyle ski World Cup finals prepares to take off at Big Air at Fenway, an X Games-style ski and snowboard jumping event.

    With participation in snow sports stagnant for the past three decades, US Ski and Snowboard Association president Tiger Shaw looked to the East, where large segments of the population are interested in winter sports.

    New England was a focal point for Shaw, who hails from Stowe, Vermont. First, he greenlighted the association’s involvement in Big Air at Fenway, an X Games-style ski and snowboard jumping event. Then he helped organize the first World Cup ski race in New England in 25 years, at Vermont’s Killington Mountain. Events like these, Shaw says, will help “lure more participants into [our sport] and excite and engage” people who already care about it.

    The rewards were immediate. More than 27,000 attended two days of ski and snowboard jumping at Fenway, getting a first look at a sport that will make its Olympic debut in 2018. And approximately 30,000 attended two days of women’s ski racing at Killington, a crowd World Cup overall champion Mikaela Shiffrin compared favorably to those in ski racing-infatuated Europe. The World Cup should be back in November.


    Matt Pepin is a Globe staff writer. Send comments to Follow us on Twitter @BostonGlobeMag.