Steamboat Springs Editor's note: This story has been updated from its original version to clarify that the Tread of Pioneers Museum put together all events and displays mentioned.
The Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club hopes to send between 15 and 20 athletes with Yampa Valley ties to the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver, British Columbia, beginning Feb. 12.
Steamboat Springs already has produced 87 Winter Olympians who have combined to make 139 Olympic appearances, according to the Winter Sports Club. That means Steamboat has produced more Olympians than any other city in North America.
And with the Vancouver Games just around the corner, Ski Town USA is feeling the Olympic spirit. The Tread of Pioneers Museum has put together displays and events to celebrate the town’s Olympic heritage in the month leading up to the February games.
■ “Celebrating our Olympic Heritage: Honoring Steamboat Springs’ First Olympian, John Steele” — an exhibit in the Thunderhead building at Steamboat Ski Area
Steamboat’s first Winter Olympian was John Steele, who placed 15th in Nordic jumping at the 1932 Games in Lake Placid, N.Y. Commemorating his appearance is an exhibit on the first floor of the Thunderhead building at Steamboat Ski Area.
The exhibit, titled “Celebrating our Olympic Heritage: Honoring Steamboat Springs’ First Olympian, John Steele,” includes artifacts such as Steele’s Olympic uniform hat. The display will be up until April 9.
■ “Our Winter Olympic Tradition” — an exhibit at Bud Werner Memorial Library
The many local Winter Olympians who followed Steele’s lead are remembered in the “Our Winter Olympic Tradition” display on the second floor of Bud Werner Memorial Library.
The display specifically honors the seven local Winter Olympians who have been inducted into the National Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame and the Colorado Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame.
They are: Gordon Wren, Ted Farwell, Katy Rudolph-Wyatt, Buddy Werner, Sven Wiik, Billy Kidd and Nelson Carmichael. The display also includes Winter Olympic history, Winter Sports Club history, a list of local Winter Olympians, current local athletes to watch and a trivia question that can earn you a prize if answered correctly at Tread of Pioneers Museum.
■ “Keeping the Olympic Spirit Strong” — a new exhibit at Tread of Pioneers Museum
Tread of Pioneers Museum put together the other displays, as well of one of its own, “Keeping the Olympic Spirit Strong.” The display will be “focused on the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club athletes who are on their way to the 2010 Olympic Games,” said Katie Adams, curator at the museum. The display opens Wednesday in the museum’s “History of Skiing” exhibit.
■ Other Olympics-related events
The Vintage Ski Fashion Show, scheduled for 6 p.m. Jan. 21 at United Methodist Church of Steamboat Springs, will showcase vintage winter wear of yesteryear. The free event put on by the Tread of Pioneers Museum includes refreshments, commentary and vintage ski films.
In February, the museum will host an intimate open forum with former local Olympians, titled “The Olympic Experience.” The date and time have yet to be announced.