City workers improvising to get snow for Winter Carnival street events | SteamboatToday.com

City workers improvising to get snow for Winter Carnival street events

Liam Baxter, 11, caught some of the biggest air during Sunday's donkey jump at the 101st Winter Carnival. Baxter couldn't stick the landing but pumped his fist to the cheering crowd after his fall.

— City officials are confident they will be able to find enough snow to pack Lincoln Avenue for next weekend's Steamboat Springs Winter Carnival street events.

Ideally, the city wants to dump between 130 and 150 dump trucks full of snow onto Lincoln Avenue for the two days of street events, where kids on skis are pulled down the street by horses. That is about 2,000 cubic yards of snow that the city currently does not have at the rodeo grounds, which is where the city would like to harvest the snow because it is close to Lincoln Avenue. The city hires about eight contractors to help haul the snow.

"We prefer not to haul from farther distances, but we're looking at all the options," said Craig Robinson, the city's open space and Howelsen Hill facilities supervisor.

Robinson is hoping for colder weather so the Howelsen snowmakers can make more snow for the events, but he said the weather pattern does not look good.

"Looking at the weather pattern, we might only have two productive nights at best," Robinson said.

He would like the temperature to be at 15 degrees to make snow.

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"We can make snow at 25 degrees, but it's not a productive night at that point," Robinson said.

On Wednesday, the city will begin hauling snow to Lincoln Avenue and cram it into boxes to make blocks of snow that then will be sculpted into sculptures by Steamboat Springs High School students.

Because of a snow shortage, the city's Street Superintendent David Van Winkle said they would be hauling the snow from a parking lot that is not plowed.

"We have to do some improvising this year," Van Winkle said.

At 2 a.m. Saturday, the dump trucks will begin hauling the snow to downtown and ideally blanket the street with snow that is about 8 inches thick. It has to be a certain depth for the horses, Van Winkle said. By 6 a.m. the surface will be groomed and ready for the events. After the events, the snow is plowed onto the side of the street. The crew will come back at about 4 a.m. Sunday to cover the street again. When street events are concluded, the snow will be hauled to the city's snow storage site off of 13th Street.

To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247, email mstensland@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @SBTStensland

Winter Carnival events for Feb. 7 and 8

Saturday, Feb. 7

8 to 11 a.m. Knights of Columbus Pancake Breakfast

(Holy Name Catholic Church, 524 Oak St.) Hosted annually by the Knights of Columbus, this function is the perfect way to fuel up for all of the day’s activities. In addition to a Winter Carnival button, donations are accepted.

8 a.m. 100-Meter Nordic Sprint

(Lincoln Avenue in downtown Steamboat) The Steamboat Springs Nordic Council is looking for the fastest skate skiers in the ’Boat! They are hosting a 100-meter Nordic Sprint on Lincoln Avenue between Seventh and Eighth streets prior to the Street Events. The race will have male and female divisions as well as 13 and older and 12 and younger categories. Anyone interested can register for this free event at the Steamboat Springs Touring Center by calling 970-879-8180.

9 a.m. to noon Street Events

(Lincoln Avenue in downtown Steamboat) Presented by Yampa Valley Bank. A wildly popular and entertaining show featuring children on skis and snowboards being pulled behind horses along snow covered Lincoln Avenue. Races include street slalom, ski joring, ring and spear, donkey jump and the adult shovel race. The horse events are for children ages 6 to 14. Non-horse events for ages 1 to 14. Pre-registration is required at http://www.wintercarnivalsteamboat.com.

1 p.m. Pro Alpine Ski Jumping Qualifications

(Howelsen Hill, downtown off Fifth Street) This is a must-see ski jumping event with participants launching off of the HS127 jump on Alpine skis and boots, rather than usual ski jumping equipment. For more information, call Pat Arnone at 970-734-8966. There is a $100 entry fee.

6:15 to 6:45 p.m. SSWSC Athlete Exhibition

(Howelsen Hill, downtown off Fifth Street) Winter Sports Club athletes demonstrate their skills.

7 p.m. Night Extravaganza

(Howelsen Hill, downtown off Fifth Street) Presented by Yampa Valley Bank. A must-see evening of entertainment at historic Howelsen Hill. The evening features a winter sports exhibition, the Lighted Man, torchlight parades, fiery hoop jumpers and an over-the-top fireworks. Remember to wear your Winter Carnival button.

Sunday, Feb. 8

9 to 11 a.m. Street Events

(Lincoln Avenue in downtown Steamboat) Sponsored by Yampa Valley Bank. See above description.

11:30 a.m. or later Diamond Hitch Parade

(Lincoln Avenue in downtown Steamboat) The diamond hitch consists of at least four skiers as they hold on to points of a rope tied in the shape of one or more diamonds. Animals, people or vehicles may pull the skiers down the snow-filled street. Anyone is welcome to enter the parade. Preregistration is required by 6 p.m. Jan. 30. Call the Winter Sports Club at 970-879-0695, ext. 100 for a parade entry form or visit http://www.wintercarnivalsteamboat.com.

1 p.m. Pro Alpine ski jumping finals

(Howelsen Hill, downtown off Fifth Street) This is a must-see ski jumping event with participants launching off of the HS127 “Big Hill” on Alpine skis and boots, rather than the usual ski jumping equipment. For more information, call Pat Arnone at 970-734-8966. There is a $100 entry fee.

1 to 2 p.m. Parent-Child Downhill

(Howelsen Hill, downtown off Fifth Street) Everyone is a winner in this noncompetitive, fun event. An adult and child ski together through Howelsen Hill’s terrain. Each child is given a participant ribbon and is provided an opportunity to have a professional photograph taken on the podium. Preregistration is not required, but a release form must be signed or already be on file with Winter Sports Club. A lift ticket will be included for competitors.

For more information, call the Winter Sports Club at 970-879-0695, ext. 100, or visit http://www.wintercarnivalsteamboat.com.

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