MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Minnesota will host a World Cup cross-country ski event at Theodore Wirth Park in March 2020, the Loppet Foundation and the International Ski Federation announced Friday.

“Hosting the World Cup is our chance to show skiers from around the world how Minnesota embraces winter — through sport and through our hospitality,” said Jessie Diggins, Afton native and Olympic gold medalist. “U.S. Ski & Snowboard and The Loppet Foundation are excited to host a world-class competition and share our state with athletes from around the world.”

The event is a cross-country skiing world tour held each winter between November and March. The fastest skiers in the world will take part in the competition.

“The Loppet has helped put Minneapolis cross-country skiing on the map, and Theodore Wirth Park offers the best trails in our state,” said Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey. “Hosting the cross-country ski World Cup is yet another chance to showcase how to do winter right and for our city to shine as we show the world that Minneapolis welcomes everyone with open arms.”

The 2020 event will be the first time the competition has been held in the United States since 2001.

The competition will take place at the new “Trailhead” facility in Theodore Wirth Park, a year-round hub for outdoor events that will host competitive races and community events. The facility opened this summer.

For more information on the event or to volunteer, visit the Loppet Foundation website.