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Sisters in Steamboat draws more than 100

Sisters, literal or figurative, join for second annual event

Better Meals for a Better Planet presenter Jill Waldman
Matt Stensland

Steamboat Springs — It’s been a year since the Nelson sisters have been together in one place. Connie lives in Broomfield, Carol in Kansas City and Cathy in Texas. — It’s been a year since the Nelson sisters have been together in one place. Connie lives in Broomfield, Carol in Kansas City and Cathy in Texas.

— It’s been a year since the Nelson sisters have been together in one place. Connie lives in Broomfield, Carol in Kansas City and Cathy in Texas.

They all have different last names now, and children of their own. Long gone are the days of sharing a room and hairbrush fights.

But they each took time out of their lives to be with one another this weekend and attend the second annual Sisters in Steamboat Weekend in Steamboat Springs.



“I like my sisters, love my sisters,” said Cathy Nelson, the oldest. “I see a little bit of me in each of them.”

Carol Nelson said although they don’t see each other often, the women picked up right where they left off.



On Saturday morning, they had just left a photography workshop and were about to head to lunch and a belly-dancing class.

“Now, we get to know each other as real people,” Cathy Nelson said. “And it just feels right.”

More than 100 “sisters” joined together this weekend for Sisters in Steamboat, which featured parties, enrichment workshops and discounts at restaurants and shops in Steamboat.

With the diversity of events, the participants — who were simply called sisters throughout the weekend — could tailor-make their ideal weekend, or, like Bonnie Johnston, of Evergreen, stumble upon a new hobby.

Looking for the lecture on heart health, Johnston accidentally found herself in a seminar on journaling taught by life coach Susan de Wardt.

Johnston left the room with new goals in mind.

“I discovered it’s something I’m interested in doing,” Johnston said. “It’s good for you and your feelings. It opens up …”

Next to her, a woman just her height and with similar eyes finished her sentence:

“… another form of art,” Joan Manchester said.

The fact is, although the women are identical twins, they’re not related to each other.

But they’re kindred sisters and attended the weekend festival for the second year in a row.

“It’s wonderful just to be with friends,” Manchester said. “I think I like the more in-depth program this year.”

Saturday afternoon, as Steamboat-based cook Jill Wald­man did a cooking demonstration for 25 women, event committee member Jill Murphy Long sampled some of the fresh treats.

She said the organizers were thrilled with how the event had gone so far, with the final major party, the “Eat Dessert First” and Little Black Dress event Saturday night, still to come.

“It’s beyond our expectations,” Long said. “We had 110 registered on Friday, but we’ve had more women come in for lunch or just for a workshop. Steamboat women are busy women and might only be able to get away for one or two things. The idea is we’re all sisters.”

Mainstreet Steamboat Spr­ings Manager Tracy Barnett said the event was designed to fit into the shoulder season in Steamboat Springs and promote local businesses and activities.

“It’s about connections and friends,” Barnett said. “And we just don’t take the time anymore. We’re lucky if we call or e-mail a friend.”

She said the number of women registered was about twice as many last year.

And next year, she hopes her sister in California will join her for the weekend.

As for the Nelson sisters, they also plan to return, but they might welcome new faces into the sisterhood.

“Next year, we want to bring our daughters,” Carol said.


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