GoVail Blog

Vail ski season begins Nov. 18; Michael Franti and Lettuce to headline first big event

Posted by Polina LaConte on Oct 20, 2016 3:50:39 PM

Vail Mountain will open for winter operations on Friday, November 18, 2016, and Vail Snow Daze will once again kick off the 2016-2017 winter season for the Town of Vail and for the resort. Taking place Dec. 9-10, Vail Snow Daze is the first of multiple events Vail will host during the early season this year.

The Michael Franti Trio and Lettuce will headline Vail Snow Daze, Vail Mountain’s signature early-season celebration, with two nights of free concerts. Bud Light presents The Michael Franti Trio on Friday, December 9, 2016, and Lettuce, on Saturday, December 10, 2016.

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Topics: Vail, Music, ski, snowboarding

Vail Resorts buys Whistler; Epic Pass will work there in 2017-18

Posted by Polina LaConte on Aug 10, 2016 12:42:15 AM
Vail Resorts and Whistler Blackcomb have entered into a strategic business combination joining Whistler Blackcomb with Vail Resorts. Under the transaction, Vail Resorts would acquire 100 percent of the stock of Whistler Blackcomb, whose shareholders would receive C$17.50 per share in cash and 0.0975 shares of Vail Resorts common stock, for consideration having a total value of C$36.00 per share. The share exchange ratio is based upon closing stock prices and currency exchange rates as of August 5, 2016 and is subject to a currency exchange rate adjustment, as described below.

"Combining Whistler Blackcomb with Vail Resorts' portfolio of outstanding resorts provides Whistler Blackcomb with increased financial strength, marketing exposure, guest relationships and broadens the geographic diversity of our company with resorts across the United States, as well as in Australia and Canada. This relationship will bring greater resources to support our current operations and our ambitious growth plans, including the Renaissance project, the most exciting and transformative investment in Whistler Blackcomb's history," said Dave Brownlie, Whistler Blackcomb's chief executive officer.

"Whistler Blackcomb is one of the most iconic mountain resorts in the world with an incredible history, passionate employees and a strong community," said Rob Katz, chairman and chief executive officer of Vail Resorts. "With our combined experience and expertise, together we will build upon the guest experience at Whistler Blackcomb while preserving the unique brand and character of the resort as an iconic Canadian destination for guests around the world. We are delighted to add such a renowned resort to Vail Resorts and look forward to expanding our relationships in the Sea-to-Sky community, British Columbia and Canada. We look forward to working with Dave and the entire Whistler Blackcomb team as we support their efforts to continue the great progress that has made Whistler Blackcomb the world-renowned resort it is today. We are excited about what this transaction means for guests and look forward to providing access to the resort for our season pass holders around the world."

Mr. Brownlie added, "As the number one ranked and most visited resort in North America, Whistler Blackcomb has enjoyed tremendous success by delivering an exceptional mountain experience for our passionate and loyal guests — both locally and from around the world. That's going to continue as we work with our new colleagues at Vail Resorts as well as our employees, local businesses, community and government stakeholders to make Whistler Blackcomb better than ever. We will also continue our discussions with the Squamish and Lil'wat First Nations, on whose traditional lands we operate, regarding a business partnership that will benefit our communities, our province and our company for decades to come. Our board of directors has also been monitoring the unique challenges facing the broader ski industry due to the unpredictability of year-to-year regional weather patterns. Whistler Blackcomb, with its unprecedented acreage of high alpine terrain and Glacier bowls, is well positioned, but by no means immune to these challenges. Partnering with the geographically diversified Vail Resorts and extending its successful Epic Pass products to Whistler Blackcomb are customer-focused ways of securing the long-term future of our resort, our industry and our community."

Whistler Blackcomb will nominate one member of its board to the Vail Resorts board of directors, and Dave Brownlie will continue leading Whistler Blackcomb as the resort's chief operating officer and will become a member of the senior leadership team of Vail Resorts' mountain division.

Vail Resorts recognizes that Whistler Blackcomb is in the Squamish and Lil'wat First Nations' traditional territories and will support and continue the ongoing efforts to negotiate the renewal of Whistler Blackcomb's Master Development Agreements with significant long-term benefits to the Squamish and Lil'wat First Nations, the Province of British Columbia and the Resort Municipality of Whistler.
Local leadership. Whistler Blackcomb will continue to have principally local Canadian leadership, with critical day-to-day mountain operations residing at the resort, including ongoing primary responsibility for relationships with the local community, governments and First Nations.

Vail Resorts will invest substantially in Whistler Blackcomb's mountain infrastructure and growth plans, including continuing to build community and stakeholder support for the recently announced Renaissance project, a transformational investment which will diversify the local tourism economy; provide new four-season, weather-independent activities; and elevate Whistler Blackcomb's core skiing, mountain biking and sightseeing experiences for decades to come.

For the full 2016-17 winter season, Whistler Blackcomb will continue to honor the resort's existing season pass products. Vail Resorts looks forward to integrating Whistler Blackcomb into its Epic Season Pass and other season pass products for the 2017-18 winter season.
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Topics: Vail, mountain biking, ski, snowboarding

Vail Mountain Begins Replacement of Sun Up Express lift

Posted by Polina LaConte on Jul 27, 2016 10:12:35 PM

While summer is in full force and Epic Discovery, Vail’s new on-mountain summer experience, is fully operational, Vail Mountain is looking toward winter and the approaching 2016-2017 ski and snowboard season.

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Topics: Vail, ski, snowboarding

Vail Mountain and Beaver Creek Announce 2016-2017 Winter Operating Dates

Posted by Polina LaConte on Apr 29, 2016 1:06:45 AM

Vail Mountain and Beaver Creek Resort announced operating dates for the resorts’ 2016-2017 ski and snowboard season. Vail will be open from Friday, Nov. 18, 2016, through Sunday, April 23, 2017. Beaver Creek will operate from Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2016, through Sunday, April 16, 2017.

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Topics: Vail, Beaver Creek, ski, snowboarding

Vail Mountain Extends 2015-2016 Winter Season - Extraordinary snow conditions allow for extra skiing and snowboarding

Posted by Polina LaConte on Mar 31, 2016 12:57:18 AM

With nearly two feet of snow in the last week, 25 feet so far this season and powder in the forecast, Vail Mountain will extend its scheduled closing date for the 2015/2016 winter season one week to April 17. The annual Spring Back to Vail event will occur as scheduled April 8-10, including a free concert at Solaris showcasing Chris Robinson Brotherhood on Friday night and the World Pond Skimming Championships on Sunday at the base of Golden Peak.

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Topics: Vail, snow, ski, snowboarding

VIDEO: 14 month old baby snowboarding in Vail

Posted by Polina LaConte on Mar 13, 2016 11:42:24 PM

Have you ever seen a baby ride a snowboard?

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Topics: Vail, kids, snowboarding

Spring Back to Vail Entertainment Lineup Announced

Posted by Polina LaConte on Mar 9, 2016 12:58:50 AM

It’s that time of year again.Springtime at Vail Mountain is soon upon us. Along with the bluebird days, warm temperatures, spectacular spring skiing and snowboarding, comes the biggest end-of-season bash in the Rocky Mountains, Spring Back to Vail, April 8-10. The season will end in style with some not-so-serious fun under the sun, including a free live concert, the infamous World Pond Skimming Championships, après after-dark parties, base area giveaways, and much more.

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Topics: Vail, Music, ski, snowboarding

Burton US Open underway in Vail

Posted by Polina LaConte on Mar 2, 2016 1:04:00 AM

The celebrated Junior Jam returned to the 34th Annual Burton US Open Snowboarding Championships Tuesday with 15 of the top, amateur halfpipe riders ages 14 and under competing in Vail Mountain’s 22-foot superpipe. Mammoth Mountain Snowboard Team riders dominated the competition with 12-year-old Tessa Maud and 14-year-old Judd Henkes taking the top spots in the girls and boys divisions, earning the chance to compete against the pros in Thursday’s halfpipe semi-finals.

The Burton US Open continues through March 5 and includes concerts, product demos, Burton Girls happenings, kids’ Learn To Ride opportunities and more. By day, experience world-class halfpipe and slopestyle competition, then at night keep the momentum high with FREE concerts, events and 

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Topics: Vail, snowboarding

World’s Top Snowboarders to Compete at the 34th Annual Burton US Open in Vail

Posted by Polina LaConte on Feb 26, 2016 10:58:03 PM

The 34th annual US Open Snowboarding Championships announce a stellar field of riders slated to compete in the longest-running snowboard competition in the world fromFebruary 29th – March 5th at Vail Mountain Resort. Confirmed top riders include two-time Olympic gold medalist Shaun White (USA) competing in both halfpipe and slopestyle, 2016 X Games gold medalists Chloe Kim (USA), Spencer O’Brien (CAN) and Matt Ladley (USA). Eight-time US Open winner Kelly Clark (USA) and Taku Hiraoka (JPN) will be returning to defend their 2015 US Open halfpipe titles, along with Jamie Anderson (USA) and Yuki Kadono (JPN), both defending their 2015 Burton US Open slopestyle titles. 
Shaun White says, “I'm excited to be competing - the Open has always been one of my favorite events since I was a kid.”
Now in its 34th year, the legendary Burton US Open is the original competitive snowboard event featuring the most progressive riding of the season. As always spectators are invited to come watch all the exciting competitions for FREE. 
“The US Open has always been the event I look forward to in the season,” says longtime US Open halfpipe competitor and two-time X Games gold medalist Danny Davis. “It’s a special one to me, it was the first professional contest I ever did as a kid, and in many ways helped launch my career. I’m always excited to go.” He adds, “It’s the season ender and a really fun one for music and seeing all of our friends. I would love to take home a US Open title!”

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Topics: Vail, Video, snowboarding

Burton US Open in Vail has packed entertainment line-up

Posted by Polina LaConte on Feb 24, 2016 11:03:09 PM

The 34th annual Burton US Open Snowboarding Championships announce an all-star entertainment schedule featuring FREE performances by established headliners and up-and-coming performers including GRiZ, Big Grams, The Bright Light Social Hour and The Sheepdogs. Taking place March 2nd- 5th in Vail, Colorado, the Burton US Open has a long tradition of hosting free concerts for the huge crowds of spectators to top off  each day’s incredible snowboard events.
Entertainment kicks off on Wednesday, March 2nd following the Junior Jam award ceremony on the Solaris Concert Stage. The Sheepdogs, the first unsigned band to grace the cover of Rolling Stone in 2011, hit the stage with “pure, simple, good-time music.” The Saskatoon, Canada based band recently released their fifth LP, Future Nostalgia, firmly rooted in the rock tradition.
On Thursday, March 3rd, following a full day of halfpipe semi-finals competition, The Bright Light Social Hour bring their electric live set to the Solaris Concert stage. The Austin, Texas based rockers are currently touring behind 2015’s Space Is Still the Place, which NPR described as “continually exhilarating.” The band exploded onto the Austin music scene in 2011, taking home six SXSW Austin Music Awards with their self-titled debut album.
After the US Open slopestyle finals award ceremony on Friday, March 4th, American experimental hip hop trio Big Grams take the stage. Big Grams consists of rapper Big Boi (half of the Outkast duo with Andre 3000) staying true to his trademark southern rap style, merged with Phantogram—the electronic rock duo of Josh Carter and Sarah Barthel contributing new wave synth and Barthel’s seductive vocals. This is your chance to be among the first to see Big Grams live ahead of a packed summer schedule of major music festivals.
Following the US Open halfpipe finals award ceremony on Saturday, March 5th, GRiZ will be closing out an epic week of entertainment. At only 25 years old, Detroit based GRiZ (Grant Kwiecinski) has had a huge year. This self-described “saxophone playing, electronic funk music producer” from Detroit, Michigan has been dominating the world of electronic music headlining some of the nation’s top venues from New York to Los Angeles. Put on your dancing shoes and join the party for a night of funky, soulful fun.
The Saturday night party continues at the US Open Closing Event at Dobson Ice Arena with a lineup of live DJs to keep the dance party going.
All events are free and open to the public. For details on all things US Open, follow the hashtag #BurtonUSOpen and head to

US Open Entertainment Schedule:
Wednesday, March 2nd
7:00pm–9:30pm: The Sheepdogs at Solaris Concert Stage

Thursday, March 3rd
7:00pm–9:30pm: The Bright Light Social Hour at Solaris Concert Stage

Friday March 4th
6:00pm – 9:30pm: Big Grams at Solaris Concert Stage

Saturday, March 5th
6:00pm – 9:30pm: GRiZ at Solaris Concert Stage
10:00pm–1:00am: US Open Closing Party at Dobson Ice Arena

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Topics: Vail, snowboarding

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