Steamboat Springs About 100 people dressed as their favorite Disney character Sunday afternoon to participate in an annual fundraiser at the Steamboat Ski Touring Center to benefit Advocates Building Peaceful Communities.
The 10th annual Colorado Ski For Women raised an estimated $5,000 for Advocates, executive director Diane Moore said. She said that amount included donations from participants, donated items for the silent auction and event sponsorships.
The money raised during this year’s noncompetitive ski and snowshoe 5k exceeded last year’s total of $3,850. The increase in donations corresponds with an increasing need for Advocates’ services. The organization provides services for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault and education for local students
Advocates served 310 victims in 2010, compared to 267 in 2009, Moore said. She said the funding, which would be used to help pay for Advocates’ supervised visitation and high school peer education program, would go a long way to continue meeting that need.
“It means a whole lot to be able to provide the services that are needed in our community,” said Moore, who wore a pair of Minnie Mouse ears Sunday.
Steamboat resident Joy Barron said she’s familiar with the services Advocates provides, having been in an abusive marriage. Barron said she attended Ski For Women with her boyfriend, William Miller, of Winter Park, to support Advocates.
“They helped me out of a hard time,” Barron said. “It’s a way to give back.”
Former Advocates employee Marchele McCarthy also understands that need. In addition to supporting Advocates, McCarthy said she attended Ski For Women because it’s a fun event.
“It’s just a really fun way to come out and support a good cause,” said McCarthy, who was wearing a black and white wig and fur coat to look like Cruella De Vil, of “101 Dalmatians.” McCarthy’s 17-month-old daughter, Emiline, was dressed in a Dalmatian costume.
For her creativity, McCarthy won best individual costume and was given a 10-day pass to the Ski Touring Center. Dressed as characters from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Kris and Kim Boyce, and their children, 5-year-old Abbie and 3-year-old Branson, won the best family costume and were given a Ski Touring Center season family pass.
Birgitta Lindgren, who helped create Ski For Women, said the Ski Touring Center continues to support Advocates by hosting the event because more people need to be made aware of domestic violence.
Moore said that message is getting across, in part because of Ski For Women.
“It’s fun to think we’ve been doing this for 10 years,” Moore said. “The community, not just the people who supported us today, but the businesses that donated auction items and sponsored us have helped this grow. That, in and of itself, says the awareness is out there and people know the need for the services we provide.”
— To reach Jack Weinstein, call 970-871-4203 or e-mail jweinstein@SteamboatToday.com