Triplet Convention 2005
"Kids in the Capital"
They came by planes, trains, and automobiles, as over 120 families made their way to Washington, D.C. this past July for the 2005 National Triplet Connection Convention. What a fantastic time was had by all! For my family, seeing Washington D.C. for the first time and attending the convention was an unforgettable experience.
On Thursday night, all the families came together at the Welcome Assembly. They visited many centers where they could write their own family constitution, enter a voting booth and vote for their favorite D.C. monument, build Lincoln Log Cabins, and learn about Pierre L'Enfant (the designer of the capital city). A favorite by many of the kids was the "decorate your own American Flag cookie" station, where most kids ended up with more frosting than cookie. Later, everyone decorated their family signs for the Triplet "March on Washington" Parade, which was fabulous, and ate some delicious snacks. Meeting all the families was, of course, the highlight of the event.
On Friday morning, all the families were up early and ready for action. We all met on the steps of the Jefferson Memorial and took a colossal family photo. It was featured on the Washington Post Website for weeks! Following the photo we ate delicious burritos, chips, and salsa catered by California Tortilla. The afternoon was spent at the American History Museum and on other sightseeing. My group hit the streets of D.C. and saw many of the monuments, memorials, and historic buildings that I had only read about. We took the traditional photo of the kids standing in front of the White House, Washington Monument, the Capitol, and more. It was a vacation we'll remember forever.
You would think most of the 400+ kids would have been ready to turn in early, but most showed up that evening for the Four-legged Race, Triplet Obstacle Course, Duck, Duck, Duck, Goose and more. Friday evening finally wound down with a Disney movie, popcorn and lemonade in the ballroom.
Saturday is usually the busiest day of the convention. The adults attended their choice of a dozen parenting workshops and the younger children were entertained by Mad Science, Milkshake, and several others. The 9 to 12 year olds took a fun and educational field trip to the Washington Monument and even got to go to the top.
Following a busy morning, we all met in the main ballroom and ate our bag lunches while visiting and getting to know yet more families from around the states. The afternoon was reserved for more sightseeing, swimming, or visiting with new friends. The Adult Session is always a highlight of the convention. We laughed and cried as Janet Bleyl and three sets of parents shared their stories of raising their triplets and quads through good times and bad. It was an emotional evening, and one that most will not soon forget.
Kevin !McNicholas, father of 18 year-old quads, wrapped up the evening by leading our live auction (cruises and an Orlando vacation were the big items). The silent auction items were displayed throughout the evening and many parents went home happy after placing the winning bids on these wonderful items. Thanks to all the families who donated items and made both auctions so successful!
On Sunday morning, all the families sat down together and enjoyed a delicious (and huge!) breakfast of eggs, potatoes, fruit, cereal, muffins, and much more. Final photos were taken and good-byes were said as we all look forward to meeting again next year.
Our conventions take an incredible amount of year-round planning by the volunteer staff members. Many thanks to Kree Lindsay, Phyllis !McNicholas, Sue Stebbins, Karen Johnson, Amy Alvarez, Janis Elspas, Susan Holloway, Judy Zahora, Kathy Griffith and Kim Worrell. Without their hard work, this amazing event would never see the light of day. Each year we also depend on local parents to give us much needed help. We are especially grateful to Li and Steve Graham, Pat Levy, Lauren LeMay, Paula Rowson, Laura Ayoud, Gary Bracken and Gus Gulmert.
Teen Triplets Report
There was a lot of fun to be had on July 7th when the 15th Annual Triplet Connection Convention kicked off in Washington, D.C. Previously held in places like Chicago, Dallas, Boston and Orlando, the Nation's Capital was obviously a great choice for this year.
When we heard that the 2005 convention was going to be in Washington, D.C., we were extremely excited. Being unable to attend last year's convention in St. Louis, the knowledge that we could go this year caused much excitement in our household. Our last convention in Orlando was fantastic and we were looking forward to the same kind of experience again and we weren't disappointed. We had an amazing time in Washington, D.C. The "Kids in the Capital" convention was a huge success.
We arrived Thursday night at the L'Enfant Hotel just in time for the welcome festivities in the Grand Ballroom. Many families came early to check out the sights before the convention started. The grand Ballroom was packed full of hungry parents and their multiples. Families were making new friends and becoming reacquainted with old ones. Triplets and their siblings were running around and having a good time, decorating cookies with American Flags on them and playing games. There were educational activities set up - a voting booth for the best historical monument and a table to teach kids about the Constitution. At the end of the night, there was the traditional parade where all the kids made posters to represent their family name and paraded around the hotel with them. We had a great time participating in the "March on Washington." Thursday night was probably the best night for us because we reconnected with our old friends, the Zahora and the Maticka families.
Friday morning was the colossal group photo on the steps of the Jefferson Memorial. Over 75 families gathered together to pose for the huge picture. Afterwards we enjoyed a delicious box lunch from California Tortilla with our friends. The rest of the day was free time so we spent ours touring D.C. The National Gallery of Art was absolutely beautiful, and the Museum of Natural History was very cool with its dinosaur display. It was also great to pass by the Capital where so many important things happen. After waiting in line a very long time some of us got to see the Declaration of Independence and many other impressive documents at the National Archives. Games were held back at the hotel for the younger kids, including a triplet obstacle course and a four legged race. A movie was shown later that night in the Grand Ballroom with popcorn and lemonade being served as well.
Saturday morning was filled with activities for everyone. There were workshops for both adults ("Parenting Teens") and us teens ("Teen Talk"). At the end the teens got together with the adults and had a question/answer discussion. We also learned about K-9 dogs and how they are trained to help police officers find illegal substances at airports and other places. To our surprise the dog started sniffing our friend Andrew Maticka for drugs. But when we later learned that the officer had planted it on Andrew just for the demonstration, we all laughed.
During the adult session that night, which consisted of discussion, auction and dessert, the teens (about 30 of us) took off on the Metro, which was a real treat and headed for the ESPN Zone arcade. We all had a blast playing tons of games like air hockey, shooting baskets and racing cars and bikes, just to name a few. Some of the teens even got some shopping in.
Before we knew it, Sunday morning had arrived. It was hard for us because it was the farewell breakfast and last day of convention. A live auction was held with toys and other items for the kids as families said goodbye over eggs and donuts. It was hard to say goodbye to new friends like the Partsch triplets and old ones like the Zahora family, who we later spent time with by the pool, and the Maticka family. Everyone ran around taking last minute pictures and exchanging e-mail addresses.
This year's "Kids in the Capital" Triplet Convention was definitely one of the best. It was the perfect way to spend our summer vacation. Unfortunately, Phoenix next year doesn't look possible for us but we're sure it will be great and we are eagerly awaiting news of where convention 2007 will be. To everyone who attended, wear your "Kids in the Capital" shirt with pride because "you're part of the Triplet Connection!"
Reported by Ivy, Liz & Rachel Agen, (17), Manalapan, MN
Colecio family letter
A Great Big Thank You from the Colecio Family for the wonderful time we had at the 2005 Triplet Connection Convention in Washington DC.
We were undecided as to whether our triplets at age 28 months would be too young to attend but WOW, were we wrong. They had a blast and were very exhausted when we got home as were Mom and Dad. They may only be able to remember the convention from pictures/video but since we will be back again, each time will make even more memories for them as they grow older.
From the Welcome Party on Thursday evening to the Farewell Breakfast on Sunday morning, every minute was so much fun and a great learning experience as well. If nothing else it sure did make us feel like we were at home enjoined in one big family. The workshops we attended helped remind us that we are not the only parents in the world experiencing the terrible 2's times 3.
There is a spot on our living room wall among our family that is waiting for that Colossal group photo. All of you should be really proud of yourselves for pulling together such a wonderful event each year.....especially you Kree, for all that you have been through and have remained so dedicated to the convention and its families. The stories that were told at the Adult meeting were remarkable and definitely brought tears to our eyes and made us even more thankful for the beautiful children we were given.
You can count on us for great recommendations/referrals to attend each and every TC Convention. If there is one thing we continually tell expectant parents of multiples, it is that you need to keep the faith and know that you can find a great support system in the Triplet Connection.
We wish all of you the best in planning upcoming conventions and thank you again for such a wonderful time in Washington, DC.
All our love and prayers,
The Colecio Family
Anthony, Jennifer, Amanda, Alexis & Antonio
Help us keep a good thing going!
Deadlines for 2013
- Convention registration deadline is May 31.
Parents: $100 each
Accompanying adults: $75 each
Children (ages 12-18): $68 each
Children (ages 2-11): $58 each
Children under age 2: No charge (also, no food is provided)