Running program inspires, empowers girls
Steamboat Springs — Through the sport of running, local girls have been strengthening their lungs but, more importantly, learning life skills.
The 10-week Girls on the Run program organized through the schools culminated with 430 girls crossing the 5-kilometer run finish line at the Strawberry Park campus. There were no rankings, and every girl who participated had No. 1 on her bib.
Runners came from throughout Colorado, including Hayden and South Routt, as well as Moffat, Summit and Eagle counties
“It’s a great program to start girls young learning the skills they need to navigate peer pressure, appreciate their uniqueness, learn to cooperate, and I just feel the sooner they can learn those skills, the better,” Girls on the Run board member Lisa Olson said. “It’s amazing how much they come out of their shell. It’s just really neat to watch.”
Many of the girls likely are not aware of all they have learned during the program, but they know they had fun.
Madison Curcio, 11, said she participated in the program because she loves to run.
“It helps me clear my mind, and it gets me pumped up,” she said. “It makes me happy.”
Laura Oslowski ran with her 12-year-old daughter, Autumn.
“I think it’s a really, really awesome event,” Oslowski. “It inspires a lot of girls.”
Mom Kathy Elliott helped coach a team from Soda Creek Elementary School this year.
“It shows them that they’re empowered,” Elliott said, “that they can make their own decisions. They do have a voice, and they can succeed at anything they choose to do.”
Elliott also got a lot out of the program.
“It was so empowering for me just to be around these girls,” Elliott said. “It was very empowering to watch and see them and the opportunities that are in front of them. Very moving.”
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Members of the Ute tribe from the Uintah and Ouray Reservation will return to Steamboat Springs to perform a series of powwow dance performances and share the history of these dances and their culture.