Holiday spirit to be served up at community drive-thru Christmas dinner
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — For the past 33 years, the Steamboat Springs Board of Realtors Community Christmas Dinner has provided a place where everyone is invited to come for a traditional meal and some holiday spirit.
This year, because of COVID-19, Board of Realtors Executive Director Ulrich Salzgeber believes the dinner is more important than ever.
“We have formed a great partnership with both Snow Bowl Steamboat and Steamboat Resort, who are helping us out a ton,” Salzgeber said. “We’re thinking there may be more demand, but nobody actually knows until the event. The one thing we do not want to do is fall short.”
The dinner will follow the example set by the Routt County United Way, who partnered with Snow Bowl to serve 500 drive-thru Thanksgiving meals.
This Christmas dinner will also be a drive-thru event and will take place from 1 to 5 p.m. Dec. 25 and provide 600 meals.
Salzgeber said 300 meals will be available at Snow Bowl Steamboat at 2090 Snow Bowl Plaza, and another 300 meals will be distributed at the Steamboat Springs Board of Realtors office at 625 S. Lincoln Ave.
“We’ll distribute from Snow Bowl, and then Steamboat Resort will bring food down to our office, and we will be distributing another 300 dinners from this location,” Salzgeber said.
“We are so grateful to be able to continue this tradition,” said Loryn Duke, director of communications for Steamboat Ski & Resort Corp. “I think now more than ever traditions are an important part of our mental health and getting through the season. We’re really proud to be able to continue this tradition with the Board of Realtors and to help in the way that we can.”
In the past, Steamboat Resort has helped with the sides, but this year, they plan to do an entire meal with ham, mashed potatoes, vegetables, stuffing and rolls.
Meryl Meranski, with Snow Bowl Steamboat, said Steamboat Meat & Seafood has donated the turkey, which will be featured in the Snow Bowl meals. She said Santa and his elves are expected to be on hand waving to passing cars when people drive through to pick up meals.
“I feel like we established quite a bit of trust from the community when we had Family Bowls,” Meranski said. “So it’s really an honor to just kind of keep the initiative going through the holidays.”
In the early months of the pandemic, Snow Bowl provided nearly 20,000 meals to those in need with a drive-thru format called “Family Bowl.” The business is closed temporarily because of COVID-19.
“We’re seeing unprecedented numbers of people losing their jobs, food insecurity, addictions and all those things,” Meranski said. “I just think it’s important that we don’t only come together but remain a community that stays together and help each other out in these difficult times.”
To reach John F. Russell, call 970-871-4209, email jrussell@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @Framp1966.
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If you need it, help is available in Routt County. Here is a guide to local resources in different areas relating to mental health.