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Steamboat Magazine

Steamboat Resort Celebrates the (Almost) End of Season 60

04/12/2023 10:07AM ● By Suzy Magill

(Participants of the 2023 Cardboard Classic prepare to make their decent down the hill. Photo by Traci Allen.)

Steamboat Springs, CO - On what was supposed to be closing weekend, Steamboat Resort celebrated a snow total of almost 450 inches. But that didn’t stop the annual Springalicious festivities from happening on Saturday and Sunday. 

This year’s Cardboard Classic was the resort’s 41st, and the crafts were better than ever, constructed of only cardboard, tape, glue, string, paint and balloons.

The 17-and-under squads raced first, with the first couple of crafts struggling to make it down the hill, a yellow vessel sliding straight down, slowly but surely, and a red Lego brick, manned by mom and son, requiring pushing and pulling to make it to the bottom. 

(Photo by Traci Allen)

Next up was the Steamboat Springs Middle School Math Club, led by their coaches Jim and Sally Lambert and assistant coach Emma Russel, a freshman at the Steamboat Mountain School.

“The process is requirements, then design, and then build. The last step is to test, which we’re doing up here,” explains Russel. 

Their craft was a mockup of an F-22 fighter jet, filled with sixth-grade boys dressed as Coke bottle missiles with bottle cap helmets and Coca-Cola labels. The jet flew down the track more aerodynamically than any other craft on Saturday. 

Some crafts celebrated the resort’s 60th Anniversary by paying homage to Steamboat’s history. The original red Steamboat Gondola sped to the bottom, staying surprisingly upright for a narrow and tall craft. A stagecoach, complete with luggage on top, a wide pair of skis sticking out the back, and historical photos and facts across the inside walls, was also surprisingly fast and stable for its size.

(Photo by Traci Allen)

Steamboat Stampede Youth Hockey’s run was one of the most exciting, with six crafts in total. Inspired by the mobile game Angry Birds, green pigs led the way in TNT boxes, followed by the main craft, filled with pigs, birds and a massive slingshot. The slingshot gained speed on the pigs, almost taking out a teammate and smashing into not only the sandbags but the fence and crowd as well. 

Brooke Baumgartner, who grew up in Steamboat and has since returned, was looking forward to her redemption round. 

“I’ve seen it many times,” Baumgartner says, “The one time we did it, we just took one giant piece of cardboard, painted it, and called it a Magic Carpet. It was a terrible idea. It didn’t even move.”

Dressed as Ms. Frizzle in a Magic School Bus, Baumgartner made up for her previous performance, zooming down the snow, with painted flames making her team look even faster. 

Other crafts included a Chaco sandal, Mario and Luigi’s crew, a Spider-Man cart, a bubble bath filled with rubber duckies and a Viking ship.

(Photo by Traci Allen)

At the Splashdown Pond Skim on Sunday, the track was replaced with a pool of blue water, lined with palm tree floaties and ski patrol-turned-lifeguards. Participants received a score of 1-10 for their costume, style, air, and crowd response. 

Ian Haupt, a Steamboat Mountain School senior dressed as Nacho Libre in a blue and pink wrestling mask and sparkly blue shorts, received perfect tens for huge air off the jump and a smooth skim out onto the snow. 

Contestants came down in cowboy get-ups, a rainbow disco suit complete with a disco ball helmet, and various pool floaties, but the best costume was Aladdin, with his snowboard turned into a colorful Magic Carpet. Participants came out various degrees of wet, depending on whether they skimmed across – coming out mostly unscathed – or splashed in upon landing their jump.

The weekend ended with a concert by The Wailers, a reggae band formed by the remaining members of Bob Marley & The Wailers. 

For those that still can’t get enough of our endless snow and sunshine, head to the ski area for the last bonus days of the season and a Springalicious Luau on Sunday.