Sunny weekend at Sunlight Mountain Resort |

Sunny weekend at Sunlight Mountain Resort

SUNLIGHT MOUNTAIN RESORT – Skiers who stayed here for the last day of the Presidents Day long weekend were rewarded Monday with champagne powder and sunny skies.

A storm dumped seven inches of fluffy powder overnight Sunday and into Monday. By morning, the skies cleared up, creating a perfect day for skiing and snowboarding.

The resort has picked up a total of two feet of snow since the beginning of February, which makes members of the Harrington Ski Circus very happy.

“We’re with a big group of 40 or 50 people staying at the Brettelberg Inn,” said Mary Buckley, who drove up from Denver to join the party.

The ski circus, basically a conglomeration of friends and family, has been coming to Sunlight Mountain on Presidents Day weekend for the past 20 years. They stay for a week and always try to have as much fun as possible.

Sadly, the circus’ founder, John Harrington of Denver, died since last year’s trip, so this year’s circus is the first ever to gather without him. But the show must go on.

“It’s a good group of people,” Buckley said. “It’s a bunch of party animals.”

Some members of the group were conspicuous on the slopes Monday, skiing with masks of presidents George Washington, Abraham Lincoln and Richard Nixon.

“Every night’s got a theme,” Buckley said, describing the apres ski events. “The first night it’s `Get here and drink as much as possible.'”

That’s followed by Irish night, Mardi Gras night and Western night.

“These guys go all out, every night,” she said.

The jesters from the Harrington Ski Circus, however, weren’t the only folks enjoying the snow.

Despite having to work later on Monday, local powderhound Dave Gordon was stoked as he enjoyed the seven-inch blessing from heaven.

“It’s going great. I got here at 10 ’til 9 and the lifts weren’t even open yet,” Gordon said. “It’s very nice snow on top of a very nice groomed base.”

Clarissa Groves, a 24-year-old Colorado Mountain College student who recently moved to Glenwood Springs from Aurora, carved some turns Monday on her snowboard.

“It’s just a little too crowded for me,” she said. “I work for Sunlight – at the downtown shop – so on my days off I usually come up here.”

Dan Collins, a plumber who lives up the Crystal River from Carbondale, took the day off from plumbing on Monday to do a little schussing. He said his sister is visiting the area while she takes a break from her duties as a prosecuting attorney in Springfield, Ill.

“It’s a great day for skiing – nice fresh snow,” Collins said.

Michelle James, a New Castle resident who grew up in Glenwood Springs, took the day off on the advice of her boss at Vicki Lee Green Realtors.

“I took the day off. I’m supposed to meet my boss,” she said.

James’ daughter, Joslin James, 11, is named in a roundabout way after the ski run “Joslin.” The run is named after the late James Joslin, James explained, and her husband wanted to give their daughter a “J” name, so they thought Joslin James would be perfect.

“Nobody knows that name except when you come up here,” she said.

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