Lisa Perricone is 2003 Winter Carnival Queen

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— The Winter Carnival queen will be conspicuously missing from this year's float.

Lisa Perricone, this year's queen, will be racing in Aspen during the carnival and will only be able to make her appearance at the opening event.

"I'm really sad that I won't be there for all of it," Perricone said. "It's such a cool atmosphere. The entire community gets together.

"There is no other town that will shut down their main street so that kids can have fun."

Her two attendants, MaryAnn Skraba and Tina Roberts, will join Perricone. Before any Winter Sports Club athlete can be nominated as Winter Carnival queen, she must first serve as an attendant, as Perricone did two years ago.

The queen and two attendants are meant to represent the kind of athletes the club strives to produce.

Perricone was never in the Little Toots Learn to Ski program, but she joined Winter Sports Club at age 4.

"I was in my first competition when I was 5," she said, "but didn't start competing seriously until I was 12 or 13."

Perricone, 17, plans to take next year off from school to train for a place on the U.S. Ski Team, she said.

Perricone and her court will be introduced to celebrants at the opening ceremony at Olympian Hall. Perricone will be crowned and receive flowers and a sash.

Being nominated as Winter Carnival royalty allows Winter Sports Club an opportunity to recognize the girls and their achievements in front of the entire community.

Coaches, athletic directors and other Winter Sports Club staff recommend a Winter Carnival queen and attendants but the board of directors chooses who wins. The criteria include scholarship, sportsmanship and prior involvement with Winter Sports Club and Winter Carnival.

According to Sureva Towler's "The History of Skiing in Steamboat Springs," Winter Carnival queen became a tradition at the third annual event.

It has always been a female-only segment of the event. There is no male court.

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