Meet New Chef Ragnar Stoddard: From Winter Park to Valentine

Club Updates

August 18, 2023 —

“I’m just a Midwest guy with a Midwest attitude.”

That’s the type of culture and personality Ragnar Stoddard brings to our team as our new chef.

And his addition has been incredibly welcome!

Granted, when one joins the team on June 24 — in the middle of our busy season — it leads to a “drinking from a fire hydrant” experience.

“Ragnar has been working hard, diving in, and learning a ton,” said Rick Kimmes.

“He is going to be a great addition to the leadership team. I look forward to working with him and the rest of the Food and Beverage team in elevating the member and guest experience while at The Prairie Club.”

The days have been long since Ragnar has started. All the while, he’s done it with a hard-working attitude and a smile on his face.

“You kind of have to lead by example, so I’ve been happy to get my hands dirty.”

Ragnar comes to us from Winter Park, Colorado, his on-again-off-again home for the past 25 years. He’d been working at an exclusive ski-in, ski-out club called the “A-club” before coming our way.

In fact, skiing is why he got into cooking.

“In my early years, I was a ski bum and I loved skiing,” explained Ragnar. “Learning to cook great food gave me the flexibility to spend more time on the mountain.”

Over the years, Ragnar has cooked in Omaha, Whitefish, Winter Park, and even Turks and Caicos.

He’s worked as a sous chef at the Tavernish Tavern, among other places throughout North America.

Part of his move closer to home is his twin, 10-year old daughters, who live in Omaha.

“They are the best thing that ever happened to me. They’re built in best friends. I love my girls and I’m excited to be closer to them working here in Valentine,” he shared.

He plans to visit Omaha often during the offseason for basketball and volleyball games.

As it pertains to The Prairie Club, Ragnar is excited to start bringing his cooking philosophy to the property. He wants to start by incorporating his creativity into specials, so keep your eyes peeled.

“Ragnar brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to our small, but strong culinary team,” expressed Rick.

We’re thankful to have Ragnar with us. Say hi next time you have the opportunity!