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Ski Idaho license plates

Ski Idaho license plates celebrate 20th year.

McCALL — In the midst of the peak car-buying season when U.S. automakers introduce new models for the coming year, Ski Idaho has announced its license plate program is celebrating its 20th anniversary. It debuted in January 1999.

“Nearly half of Ski Idaho’s funding comes from our license plate program,” Idaho Ski Areas Association board chair Bob Looper said in a statement. “It’s our biggest source of income and allows Ski Idaho to do important work like marketing our fantastic resorts to potential visitors and offering our acclaimed Idaho Peak Season Passport that lets fifth- and sixth-graders ski or snowboard 18 mountains for only 18 bucks.”

According to the Idaho Transportation Department, nearly 5,000 Idahoans display their love of skiing on their vehicles by purchasing a Ski Idaho license plate.

“The Ski Idaho license plate is one of the oldest specialty license programs in Idaho,” Department of Motor Vehicles registrations program supervisor Brian Hokanson said in a statement. “We are proud to help promote Idaho’s ski industry as well as the other specialty license programs that raise money for worthy causes.”

Ski Idaho’s publicist Tony Harrison says Idaho may have the distinction of being the first U.S. state to issue an automobile license plate featuring a skier.

1947 Ski Idaho license plate

1947 Ski Idaho license plate.

“I’ve tried to track down experts on the subject to confirm this — to no avail,” Harrison said in a statement. “However, when you search the web for ski-themed car license plates, the oldest I’ve found is a 1947 one from Idaho that says ‘Vacation Wonderland’ and sports the silhouette of a skier in mid-jump with two snowy mountain peaks in the background. The next oldest ski-related license plate I’ve been able to find dates back to 1958 in Colorado.”

To order Ski Idaho plates for your vehicles, go to accessidaho.org/secure/itd/personalized/plates.html or visit your local DMV office.

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