ATAO Kennel is creating adventure and going ONWARD towards Iditarod 2021.
38

patrons

$294
per month
I have wanted to mush in the Iditarod since I was seven years old.

I got my start mushing with Martin Buser (a four time Iditarod champion) when I was 15. He taught me all of the basics; I couldn’t have had a better mentor. After my first year and my first race, I was hooked.

I handled for a lot of mushers. I’ve run three Jr. Iditarods, and four 300 mile races. I have put in years of labor, and I’ve gotten some amazing experiences. But at the end of every winter, I’ve had to say goodbye to the dogs who I came to love-- Because they weren’t my dogs.
Until now.

In 2014 I was able to adopt my first sled dog, Hooch. She is hands down, the best dog in the world. She’s a great leader and an even better buddy. In 2016 she had a litter of pups including Ophelia, who became my second sled dog. Ophelia and Hooch and I spent the next winter in Minneapolis, but by March of that year, I realized we needed to go back to Alaska and follow our true calling. My partner and I moved to Fairbanks in July of 2017, and we started ATAO Kennel. We gathered up our little pack, including eight puppies and some more seasoned dogs.

In my decade and a half of mushing, I’ve had a lot of chances to run Iditarod with other people’s teams. It never felt right. The point, to me, of running dogs, is to get to form that team-bond. To travel a thousand miles with a group of dogs and then have to say goodbye to them at the end -- it’s not what I want.

That’s why I finally realized I had to start this on my own terms. I started my kennel, ATAO, not just to run Iditarod. I started ATAO to form a pack, a team who I won’t say good bye to. And I started my kennel with a commitment to keep a small group, so that I could focus on each and every dog as much as they deserve. I may not win any big races, but I truly believe that with dedicated love and investment, each dog can bloom to her full potential. Maybe that’s true for all of us.

Part of the mission of ATAO is also to promote healthy coping skills for those-- like me-- dealing with anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues. Being outside and being with the dogs keep me grounded and moving forward. It’s not always easy. I want to prove you can absolutely accomplish your dreams even if you struggle with your mental health.

I have fourteen dogs at ATAO now. Two of them-- Bonnie and Hooch-- are retired. This year, I have a team of twelve. Eight of those dogs are yearlings. It takes years of training to be ready to compete in Iditarod. Since this is the first year most of my team has ever raced, our focus will be on quality, happy runs, where the dogs are able to overcome obstacles and gain confidence in their ability to succeed. We’ll also be focusing on a lot of camping trips!

Our goal this season is to run one of my favorite races, the Copper Basin 300. It has been hailed by some as the toughest mid distance race in Alaska (of course some debate this!). I just love the landscape-- It’s some of the most beautiful country I’ve ever seen. I think the terrain can provide a great challenge for a yearling team.

Even with only twelve dogs, the expenses to train for and run a race are steep. I’m hoping to get to a goal of $500 / month, which will help pay for day-to-day kennel costs, booties for the dogs for training and racing, healthy, high-calorie snacks, race entry fees, travel costs, and vet costs, as well as the extreme high-protein diet athletes of this caliber must have. The dogs deserve nothing less.

Patrons here will have access to live video feeds, tracker feeds from training runs, expeditions, and races, exclusive writing, and other cool content.

If I meet my first goal, I’ll provide some other cool perks as we go!

If you want to learn more about the kennel and the dogs, please visit ataokennel.com. You can find out there about becoming an individual sponsor for one of our amazing athletes or joining our Be a Buddy program to be entered in a monthly drawing (and to support your favorite four legged stars).

Thanks for following along. As we like to say--

Onward!

Mari Troshynski - ATAO Kennel
Tiers
Photo Fan
$1 or more per month 2 patrons
Every journey begins with a single step! Get access to a members-only glimpse of the adventure, and take pride in helping ATAO make it to Iditarod!


  • Exclusive pictures and video from ATAO


This tier goes towards kennel costs, like high calorie dog food, upkeep of the dogs' living quarters, vet bills

Best Buddy
$3 or more per month 13 patrons
Everyone needs a friend!


  • Exclusive pictures and video from ATAO
  • Be a Buddy to an ATAO athlete of your choosing
    • You are listed as that dog’s Buddy for as long as you are a patron
    • You and your Buddy are entered in our monthly drawing. If you win, your Buddy gets a treat and you get some cool swag!
    • Learn about the Buddy System here! (Or visit ataokennel.com/be-a-buddy)


These funds go towards equipment like harnesses, coats, and booties for the dogs!

Troshynski Tracker
$5 or more per month 7 patrons
Someone's got to keep tabs on me!


  • Exclusive pictures and video from ATAO
  • Access to live tracking feed of training runs and races
  • On the list for the “check in we’re okay” messages
  • Be a Buddy to an ATAO kennel athlete of your choosing!


These funds go towards training costs, like straw for camping, harnesses, training booties, and sled equipment... Plus tasty snacks for the dogs!

Adventure Advocate
$9 or more per month 9 patrons
All of the adventure, none of the frostbite!


  • Exclusive pictures from ATAO
  • Access to live tracking feeds of runs and races
  • Adventure insights: extra video, writing, and updates
  • Live video feeds from race and training
  • Be a Buddy to one ATAO athlete of your choosing!


These funds go towards race expenses, like entry fees, high calorie food to keep the dogs going strong, travel expenses to get to the race

The Well-Packed Sled
$15 or more per month 2 patrons
Every race needs one! Get the whole kit'n'kaboodle in one neat package!


  • Exclusive pictures from ATAO
  • Access to live tracking feeds of runs and races
  • Adventure insights: extra updates and live feeds
  • Be a Buddy to *three* ATAO athletes of your choosing!


This tier goes towards kennel, training, and race costs!

Buddy Backer
$20 or more per month 3 patrons
Why have just one Buddy when you can have five???


  • Exclusive pictures from ATAO
  • Access to live tracking feeds of runs and races
  • Adventure insights: extra updates and live feeds
  • Be a Buddy to *five* ATAO athletes of your choosing!


This tier goes towards extra protein for your Buddies, like beef, turkey, salmon, and other meat that give your Buds that extra OOMPH!

Pack Leader
$32 or more per month 2 patrons
Head up the charge! Howl your way to the front! ATAO will follow your lead!


  • All of the above (including 5 Buddies!)
  • Handler badge (entrance to race chute) at any race ATAO runs
  • Postcard from the end of each season's major race!

Those who support at this level for 4+ months will also get:

  • End of the season THANK YOU Package from ATAO including training booties and a special yearly gift


This tier helps us better our operation, and prepare for Iditarod in 2021!

I have wanted to mush in the Iditarod since I was seven years old.

I got my start mushing with Martin Buser (a four time Iditarod champion) when I was 15. He taught me all of the basics; I couldn’t have had a better mentor. After my first year and my first race, I was hooked.

I handled for a lot of mushers. I’ve run three Jr. Iditarods, and four 300 mile races. I have put in years of labor, and I’ve gotten some amazing experiences. But at the end of every winter, I’ve had to say goodbye to the dogs who I came to love-- Because they weren’t my dogs.
Until now.

In 2014 I was able to adopt my first sled dog, Hooch. She is hands down, the best dog in the world. She’s a great leader and an even better buddy. In 2016 she had a litter of pups including Ophelia, who became my second sled dog. Ophelia and Hooch and I spent the next winter in Minneapolis, but by March of that year, I realized we needed to go back to Alaska and follow our true calling. My partner and I moved to Fairbanks in July of 2017, and we started ATAO Kennel. We gathered up our little pack, including eight puppies and some more seasoned dogs.

In my decade and a half of mushing, I’ve had a lot of chances to run Iditarod with other people’s teams. It never felt right. The point, to me, of running dogs, is to get to form that team-bond. To travel a thousand miles with a group of dogs and then have to say goodbye to them at the end -- it’s not what I want.

That’s why I finally realized I had to start this on my own terms. I started my kennel, ATAO, not just to run Iditarod. I started ATAO to form a pack, a team who I won’t say good bye to. And I started my kennel with a commitment to keep a small group, so that I could focus on each and every dog as much as they deserve. I may not win any big races, but I truly believe that with dedicated love and investment, each dog can bloom to her full potential. Maybe that’s true for all of us.

Part of the mission of ATAO is also to promote healthy coping skills for those-- like me-- dealing with anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues. Being outside and being with the dogs keep me grounded and moving forward. It’s not always easy. I want to prove you can absolutely accomplish your dreams even if you struggle with your mental health.

I have fourteen dogs at ATAO now. Two of them-- Bonnie and Hooch-- are retired. This year, I have a team of twelve. Eight of those dogs are yearlings. It takes years of training to be ready to compete in Iditarod. Since this is the first year most of my team has ever raced, our focus will be on quality, happy runs, where the dogs are able to overcome obstacles and gain confidence in their ability to succeed. We’ll also be focusing on a lot of camping trips!

Our goal this season is to run one of my favorite races, the Copper Basin 300. It has been hailed by some as the toughest mid distance race in Alaska (of course some debate this!). I just love the landscape-- It’s some of the most beautiful country I’ve ever seen. I think the terrain can provide a great challenge for a yearling team.

Even with only twelve dogs, the expenses to train for and run a race are steep. I’m hoping to get to a goal of $500 / month, which will help pay for day-to-day kennel costs, booties for the dogs for training and racing, healthy, high-calorie snacks, race entry fees, travel costs, and vet costs, as well as the extreme high-protein diet athletes of this caliber must have. The dogs deserve nothing less.

Patrons here will have access to live video feeds, tracker feeds from training runs, expeditions, and races, exclusive writing, and other cool content.

If I meet my first goal, I’ll provide some other cool perks as we go!

If you want to learn more about the kennel and the dogs, please visit ataokennel.com. You can find out there about becoming an individual sponsor for one of our amazing athletes or joining our Be a Buddy program to be entered in a monthly drawing (and to support your favorite four legged stars).

Thanks for following along. As we like to say--

Onward!

Mari Troshynski - ATAO Kennel

Recent posts by ATAO Kennel

Tiers
Photo Fan
$1 or more per month 2 patrons
Every journey begins with a single step! Get access to a members-only glimpse of the adventure, and take pride in helping ATAO make it to Iditarod!


  • Exclusive pictures and video from ATAO


This tier goes towards kennel costs, like high calorie dog food, upkeep of the dogs' living quarters, vet bills

Best Buddy
$3 or more per month 13 patrons
Everyone needs a friend!


  • Exclusive pictures and video from ATAO
  • Be a Buddy to an ATAO athlete of your choosing
    • You are listed as that dog’s Buddy for as long as you are a patron
    • You and your Buddy are entered in our monthly drawing. If you win, your Buddy gets a treat and you get some cool swag!
    • Learn about the Buddy System here! (Or visit ataokennel.com/be-a-buddy)


These funds go towards equipment like harnesses, coats, and booties for the dogs!

Troshynski Tracker
$5 or more per month 7 patrons
Someone's got to keep tabs on me!


  • Exclusive pictures and video from ATAO
  • Access to live tracking feed of training runs and races
  • On the list for the “check in we’re okay” messages
  • Be a Buddy to an ATAO kennel athlete of your choosing!


These funds go towards training costs, like straw for camping, harnesses, training booties, and sled equipment... Plus tasty snacks for the dogs!

Adventure Advocate
$9 or more per month 9 patrons
All of the adventure, none of the frostbite!


  • Exclusive pictures from ATAO
  • Access to live tracking feeds of runs and races
  • Adventure insights: extra video, writing, and updates
  • Live video feeds from race and training
  • Be a Buddy to one ATAO athlete of your choosing!


These funds go towards race expenses, like entry fees, high calorie food to keep the dogs going strong, travel expenses to get to the race

The Well-Packed Sled
$15 or more per month 2 patrons
Every race needs one! Get the whole kit'n'kaboodle in one neat package!


  • Exclusive pictures from ATAO
  • Access to live tracking feeds of runs and races
  • Adventure insights: extra updates and live feeds
  • Be a Buddy to *three* ATAO athletes of your choosing!


This tier goes towards kennel, training, and race costs!

Buddy Backer
$20 or more per month 3 patrons
Why have just one Buddy when you can have five???


  • Exclusive pictures from ATAO
  • Access to live tracking feeds of runs and races
  • Adventure insights: extra updates and live feeds
  • Be a Buddy to *five* ATAO athletes of your choosing!


This tier goes towards extra protein for your Buddies, like beef, turkey, salmon, and other meat that give your Buds that extra OOMPH!

Pack Leader
$32 or more per month 2 patrons
Head up the charge! Howl your way to the front! ATAO will follow your lead!


  • All of the above (including 5 Buddies!)
  • Handler badge (entrance to race chute) at any race ATAO runs
  • Postcard from the end of each season's major race!

Those who support at this level for 4+ months will also get:

  • End of the season THANK YOU Package from ATAO including training booties and a special yearly gift


This tier helps us better our operation, and prepare for Iditarod in 2021!