Ski patrol puts time and effort – if not tissue – into Mardi Gras float |

Ski patrol puts time and effort – if not tissue – into Mardi Gras float

I have to admit I feel a little silly writing in response to Mr. Sperb’s bashing of the Keystone Ski Patrol and our float, but here goes anyway. First, let me start by saying I thought your float was quite beautiful. It was very obvious your team put a lot of preparation into it. Let me also say that you couldn’t be more off base to assume we don’t put any effort into our floats year after year. Each of us on the team has a specific duty. My duty is costumes. It takes some time to sew six pairs of sequined chaps, acquire 14 choir robes and purchase a couple hundred dollars worth of material and trimmings. That was just my part. We also have a sound crew, a cannon crew (we were the first to have cannons on our float), choreographer, music mixer, commercial driver and professional sign construction. We use our personal days off and one night per week to meet as a team. We are professional skiers and snowboarders, but the coordination stops there. It actually takes a lot of rehearsal time to get us to dance in unison! Every year, when we start brainstorming float ideas, we have two main goals: To have a fantastic time and to light up the crowd. We make a choice to put our valuable time into choreography and great energy instead of stuffing tissue paper. There is nothing in the rules stating we have to stuff a float to make it a float. In response to your accusation of making people freeze, we were the last float in the parade. Our entire routine lasted less than five minutes. We did not force anyone to wait for us to get through. Oh, and by the way, the crowd loved us. What a great feeling to see people dancing and cheering and smiling as we passed through! You yourself admitted that your crew was scantily dressed. So why bash us for doing the same thing? If you would like to claim yourself as the winner of the Mardi Gras float parade, go right ahead. First, second, and third prizes all received the same thing. The patrol just loves to have fun. We spend our days in stressful situations taking care of the injured and controlling avalanche terrain. Mardi Gras is our way of letting off steam with our best friends and co-workers. As long as we can keep having fun and lighting up the crowd, we will keep doing whatever it takes. First place is just a byproduct. The folks who come out to enjoy the festival year after year are the ones who should win.

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