AND THE WINNER IS….

May 11, 2010

It’s been a couple of months since the Win a Free Camp contest with TJ Schiller was launched and
there were a ton of great entries. Everyone who made it to round 3 put together great essays or videos. I am happy to announce that the winner is 15 year-old Matt Anderson from Toronto, Ontario. Matt was
closely followed by Megan Clinton from Walpole, MA and Karen Byskov from Stavanger, Norway.

Matt’s great adventure will start at the Vancouver Airport on July 10th where he will be picked up by TJ and his film crew. We will keep you updated here with blogs and video feeds of this epic week long experience at Momentum.

Thanks again to everyone that entered the contest and have a great spring!

Here’s the essay Matt wrote along with his video edit.

Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Matt Anderson and I am 15 years old. I am from Toronto, ON but ski in Ellicottville, NY (don’t ask why).

Things never happen like they plan. No matter how hard you work on something, the possibility of things going wrong seems to be way too high. I learned this first hand when making my video for this contest. When I heard the news about making the finals, I was ecstatic to say the least. I couldn’t fall asleep because I was imaging what my video would look like in my head over and over again. With my ideas, and the help of my friend who was an amazing filmer, I thought there was no way I could lose. That is when the series of unfortunate events started, which would lead to me sitting on my couch writing this essay.

I had the video in my head perfectly. It included suits, a hyperbole of a tall tee, girls, and a doctor (I will let you imagine the rest). I could recite the script word for word before the script even existed. I really thought I had the winning idea. When I called my friend up to film, he seemed excited to work with me. He had a $3000 camera, tripod, dolly, and letus adapter. The works. As I began to plan times to film with him, I realized how busy his schedule was. As a Formula V race car driver who also works full time, he has a lot of things to do in a small amount of time. I began to realize, my dream video might not begin to come true. I needed a lot of hours put into this, but the timeframe just wasn’t there. The final weeks began to wind down. My friend finally got a few hours for me into his schedule. He began to read my ideas when I came over. I could tell he knew we couldn’t do it, but didn’t want to say it. Before we started shooting, he asked me if I could edit. I told him yes, but didn’t know how to capture video onto my computer. This was obviously a problem, so he tried to teach me. Instead of spending our precious hours filming a banger video, we sat in front of my computer, more frustrated then ever. Not only could my computer not handle the HD, we couldn’t get it on in the first place. After hours on end, nothing was accomplished. As Taylor left, he asked me “What are you going to do for the contest?” With my head down, I replied in a monotone voice, “I just guess this wasn’t my year.”

I thought I was a complete failure. I felt stupid that I was given this amazing chance at to win something thousands of kids would kill for, and I didn’t do anything with it. It was like getting into Harvard, but deciding to work as a garbage man instead. That’s when I realized “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work” (Thomas Alva Edison). Video was out of the question and I knew that a piece of writing wouldn’t win, and it still probably won’t. That is where you come in, TJ.

Everything that has happened to me within the past few weeks, kept taking a turn, a turn for the worst. Right now you have to opportunity to change that. I will expect for my story to be read and immediately tossed aside as you watch all other videos people have made. But imagine what it would be like for me to get the email saying I won. My life would take a 180 degree turn for the best. So when you are watching that video of the kids throwing double flips, think about it. That kid probably is on top of the world. His life is great and only getting better. Then think about what I had happen to me. Everything always seemed like it happened against me. Surprise me TJ. Turn someone’s life upside down.

I find it strange how kids these days know so much about their favourite skiers, yet they know nothing about us. With the resources I had, I made a quick video to show you who I am and why I should go to Momentum: