Jim Clark: Thanks for everything, Steamboat | SteamboatToday.com

Jim Clark: Thanks for everything, Steamboat

I know I'm going to miss a lot of people and organizations, but today, I want to write a big thank you to all those who helped make the overall start and Stage 2 start of the USA Pro Challenge a success.

For their vision and tireless work in bringing this event to Steamboat Springs and putting us on the international map, thanks to co-chairs Jim Schneider and Kara Stoller.

First, kudos to the hardworking folks at the city of Steamboat Springs. These days, government workers are often painted with a brush they don't deserve. During the days leading up to this, they worked like crazy, stretched themselves to the limit and exhibited a "can-do" attitude about everything.

Special thanks to the Steamboat Springs Police Department, community service officers, Public Works Department (Chuck, I hope you get a break soon), parks and community services, finance department and everyone else on that team, including the GIS folks and those whose names and titles I will miss, but whom I appreciate anyway.

Our sponsors also deserve major thanks. The financial support was tremendous, as was the generosity.

To the city, Routt County, Smartwool, Orange Peel, ESPN 98.9, Christy Sports, Steamboat Today, E3 Chophouse, Colorado Group Realty, Steamboat Ski and Resort Corp., Steamboat Ski & Bike Kare, Deer Park Road, Holiday Inn, Doc's Auto Clinic, Schmiggity's, Ski Haus and Black Tie Rentals, thanks to you for making it possible.

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The group that gave the most was our four major lodging partners. Housing the overall start was a great deal to ask from this group, and they moved heaven and earth to accommodate the teams, officials, media and crews.

A special thanks to Steamboat Resorts by Wyndham Vacation Rentals, the Steamboat Grand, the Sheraton Steamboat Resort and Mountain Resorts. In all my years in different destinations in Colorado and beyond, I've never had the privilege of working with a more generous, team-spirited group of lodging folks. I love you folks.

When we needed some last-minute help in community notifications, Jim Boyne and Blair Seymour, from the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club, stepped up big time. They grabbed the bull by the horns and never said "no" to a request. What great community partners.

The Free Summer Concert Series team of Coleman Cook, John Waldman and Scott Fox collaborated to make the teams presentation a special evening. And we couldn't have pulled that off without a last-minute contribution of equipment and staff from Diane Johnson and the Yampa Valley Electric Association. Thanks, YVEA.

Let's also thank the hundreds of volunteers who gave their time to do everything, including acting as course marshals, making deliveries, recruiting, coordinating, begging, borrowing, marketing and all kinds of other tasks —both those on the local organizing committee, as well as those who came out for the day, stepped up and made a difference. You may be nameless, but you are appreciated.

I'd also like to commend the downtown business and residential community. Major street closures for big events impact them and can be very disruptive. They tolerated the intrusion for the greater good of the worldwide marketing this provides for long-term gain. Thank you for your patience.

And the same goes to our residents. Monday made it difficult to move across Steamboat. Thanks to you for preparing in advance and putting up with the inconvenience. I hope many of you were able to enjoy the excitement and energy that came with the biggest event we've yet hosted.

Last, but not least, thanks go to my team, in particular, Sarah Leonard, Maren McCutchan, Tarsha Ebbern, Holly Kirkpatrick, Angela Sherwood, Reed Jones, Jane Blackstone and our incredible intern, Sheree Brown. Sarah and Maren make up our two-person events department and work crazy hours to run Chamber events. We volunteered to do much of the heavy lifting for the local organizing committee, and these ladies shined.

In short, thanks to everyone. This was a team and community effort. You made it happen.

Jim Clark is CEO of the Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association.