Local Olympian goes to class | SteamboatToday.com

Local Olympian goes to class

Lalive visits with Christian Heritage School students

Zach Fridell

— Who better to judge a book report on world-class athletes than a member of their ranks? Olympian and world-class skier Caroline Lalive joined Lauri Bradt’s fourth- and fifth-grade class at the Christian Heritage School on Tuesday to quiz the students on sports-related books they have read during the first month of school.

Students took turns sitting in the front of the class with Lalive, who just returned to Steamboat Springs from training in Chile, to explain the personalities, morals and plotlines in the stories they had read.

Bryan Gilbertson, who read Matt Christopher’s “Snowboard Champ,” said he was inspired by the book to be more courageous.

“You shouldn’t be afraid to take on any challenge or try to do it,” he explained to Lalive. “It taught me you can do anything with a little bit of effort and a little bit of courage.”

Tiger Woods, Venus Williams, Babe Ruth and other teams and players were recounted by the students, who were excited to have Lalive in their classroom and surrounded her for autographs.

Lalive attended The Lowell Whiteman School after she moved to Steamboat 13 years ago. Since that time, she has participated on the U.S. Ski Team and traveled to the Olympics, but when she’s in Steamboat Springs, she lives down the street from Bradt.

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Because of their proximity and mutual friends, Lalive has visited Bradt’s classroom before and said she travels around to other schools in the area.

“I go whenever they want me and my kookiness to show up,” she said. “I love to be involved, and any way I can give back is cool.”

Jon Perrego got extra credit for dressing up in a baseball uniform for his book report, while Anna Hoj explained how Venus Williams is fearless.

Lalive also answered questions from the students about her accomplishments and how she trains in the off-season. Lalive said she soon will travel to Park City, Utah, where she will train until she returns to ski in Steamboat in November.

Although students were excited to see Lalive in class, several of them had seen her around town or live near her Steamboat home, they took having a world-class athlete in their room in stride.

“It was sweet,” said Anna. “Next time, we should have Michael Phelps.”