Thursday, March 10, 2011
Steamboat Springs was a touch sunnier last week with the arrival of the Sunshine Kids on Sunday from Houston, TX. Twenty-two kids fighting cancer were brought to Steamboat with the non-profit group to enjoy a week of snow and were encouraged to forget their illnesses. Following the group’s motto, their only instruction was to have fun being “just plain kids.” Given Steamboat’s location, it’s not very hard to do that, considering Steamboat has the power and the powder to encourage just about all ages to forget their worries and play in the snow.
Starting on Sunday, agents greeted the kids at the airport with gift bags and then enjoyed a Grammys celebration with them later that evening at a decadent party. The party was a great way to introduce the kids to different agents and prepare them for the week of outdoor fun they were excited for. Throughout the week Agents accompanied the Sunshine Kids on ski days, sledding nights, and snowmobile extravaganzas. There was also a game night and a Mardi Gras party for their departure and at the end of the week The Kids who spent the week learning to ski and snowboard held their own ski races, with photos provided for each child by our own Paul Knowles.
Kid’s that grow up in Steamboat don’t think twice about skiing on weekends or partaking in the Winter Sports Club. For members of the Sunshine Kids, skiing is an activity that many have never even seen as a tangible dream, let alone one that could be fulfilled while they are going through the hardest thing of their young lives. Thanks to the Sunshine Kids, dreams come true and the kids realize not only can they still do many of the things “plain kids” can do, but they can do them with enthusiasm.
While the event was particularly special for the kids involved, it also was special for the volunteers. Seeing kids who have overcome and struggled with more than most adults have to go through is quite and inspiration, and a reminder about how each day should truly be cherished.
Learn more about the Sunshine Kids, and help them smile!