Champions off the Mountain
When COVID-19 shut down the remainder of the season’s programming, SSWSC came up with a creative way to keep athletes moving with purpose while in isolation during quarantine. In the “Community Strong Challenge” athletes were asked to exercise on their own and track their mileage, with the goal of donors supporting the miles and all funds going to the Yampa Valley COVID-19 Response Fund. SSWSC athletes surpassed their initial goal of 2,000 miles of physical exercise by more than double! In all, the athletes ran, biked, walked, skied, and hiked 4,405.31 miles in three days, and their efforts generated $8,593 dollars from generous pledges for the Yampa Valley COVID-19 Response Fund.
The challenge allowed athletes to stay moving and give back to the community that has supported them for over 100 years by assisting those businesses facing challenges brought by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Strong, Balanced, and Connected
Staying in motion is imperative to good health, and during the initial “Stay at Home” phase of the COVID-19 pandemic, the SSWSC was able to partner with two local, fitness-minded organizations to provide virtual yoga and fitness classes to SSWSC’s athletes. Steamboat Pilates Yoga & Fitness and Out Here Yoga each offered four virtual classes a week specifically for the SSWSC to keep athletes strong, balanced and connected. Course costs were covered for all participating athletes by the SSWSC.
Ski Town, U.S.A Initiative
Mountain Valley Bank, Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club, Christy Sports, Smartwool, Steamboat Springs School District, Steamboat Ski & Resort Corporation, and the City of Steamboat Springs came together for the 3rd year to provide all the components necessary to run the Ski Town, U.S.A.® Initiative. Organized by the SSWSC, this program gave every Steamboat Springs School District 2nd grader the opportunity to learn to ski or snowboard at no cost. Four days of skiing or riding were provided to each child, coming from school to Howelsen Hill on the bus with their teacher and classmates in the afternoons during January and February. Each student participated in a two-hour lesson coached by SSWSC athletes and coach volunteers through the SSWSC ‘Champions of Service’ program. To maximize skiing time for the kids, Christy Sports and SSWSC’s Lori Keefe attended schools before the program started in order to measure and ensure proper equipment was provided on the ski days. This year all of the schools within the Steamboat School District participated, including North Routt Charter School, Mountain Village Montessori School, and even some homeschoolers! We observed our competitive athletes in their role as excellent youth mentors for the kids and were impressed with their kindness, patience and positive energy.
ACE Club After School Ski Program
With rental gear provided by Steamboat Ski and Bike Kare and coaching from the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club, twenty eight 4th and 5th grade kids who participate in the Soda Creek Elementary “ACE” Club came to ski or ride for three free sessions at Howelsen Hill. Most of the kids participating in the “Achieving, Collaborating, and Exploring” Club’s after school ski program use English as a second language. The focus of the group remained on homework help and developing vocabulary, reading and writing skills, but the group also embarked on adventures throughout the community to build vocabulary and provide kids with the chance to experience new things they wouldn’t normally do. This was the second season hosting the ACE Ski Program, and the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club was proud to work with the ACE Club to bring skiing and riding to these students.