The end is near and there’s nothing we can do about it. For those not yet convinced here are the signs: season pass sales have begun at Colorado Ski Country resorts, sales on last season’s equipment are popping up, ski magazines have come out with their 2009-10 gear reviews, night time temperatures are dipping below 55 degrees, and even lower in the high country, and this weekend is Labor Day, the official unofficial end of summer.
As is customary in Colorado Ski Country, we go out in style, and this year’s end of summer is no different. Resorts everywhere are hosting festivals, concerts and competitions. The question is though, are they celebrating the end of summer or the beginning of winter? Either way, there is a lot happening in Ski Country.
If you’ve never been to an outdoor concert in the mountains you’re missing some fun. Think Woodstock with out theâ€¦well they’re just fun, trust us. Aspen/Snowmass will have their last Bluegrass Sundays series on September 6th featuring the Lonepine Bluegrass Band. This concert is held on top of Aspen Mountain and is free with the purchase of a gondola ticket.
Another concert which is also free is Winter Park’s final FreeRide Friday. The Village at Winter Park is hosting a Friday evening live music event from 4:30pm to 7:30pm in the Discovery Center Plaza. Musical guest Tempa and the Tantrums, who recently were voted “Best Blues Band of the Year” in the Westword Music Awards and “Best Colorado Underground Band” by the Denver Post, will play.
Copper Mountain takes Wii Rock Band and does it one better with their Copper Country festival. This is a three day workshop from September 3rd through September 5th where you can celebrate the best of the American spirit with free music, fine art exhibition, rodeo and kids’ corral, and free street parties all weekend long.
I have no idea what gypsy jazz is but anything with the word ‘fest’ attached to it has to be a good time. DjangoFest Colorado will be at Crested Butte on September 6th for a two day event made up of concerts, workshops and impromptu djam sessions.
Everyone has a brew fest but only Steamboat has a martini fest, think James Bond, olives, shaken not stirred. Steamboat shakes up Labor Day Weekend with the 4th Annual Martini Fest, held at 6:00pm on Friday, September 4th at Thunderhead Reds Bar at the top of the gondola. Guests enjoy four martini stations, appetizers, live music, and a view that’s not to be missed.
Steamboat’s Wild West Airfest features remote-controlled aircraft shows, vintage and warbird aircraft displays, classic cars, hang-gliders, para-gliders and kids activities. The Denver Broncos Cheerleaders will also make a special guest appearance at the event to sign calendars.
As if there aren’t enough beautiful things to look at in Telluride already, this weekend they roll out the red carpet to host the Telluride Film Festival, held from September 4th through September 7th. Film buffs take over the town for four days of film frenzy. Since the program is not revealed until the event begins, cinema devotees who attend the Film Fest trust that Telluride will come up with a unique viewing experience that holds up to its high standards from years past. For more information, guests can call 1-510-665-9494 or visit www.TellurideFilmFestival.org.
Imagine having a back yard barbecue with a huge deck overlooking the majestic Rocky Mountains with tons of friends, the smell of burgers on the grill and lots of beer on ice. To make this happen all you have to do is bring the friends, Echo Mountain will provide the brews, views and meat. Take it in on September 5th and 6th with Burgers Brews and Views.
Wasn’t quite sure what category to put this one under so it will stand alone in all it’s glory, just like the resort. On September 5th Purgatory at Durango Mountain Resort rolls out its inaugural Custom Bike and Hot Rod Show from 10:00am to 3:00pm. Durango Mountain Resort, Car Club of Durango and Durango Harley-Davidson team up to offer their first annual Custom Bike and Hot Rod Show. Vintage Chevys and Fords, hot Harleys and everything in between will get engines revving for motorheads, all set to live tunes by Durango’s own Formula 151 band.
Slopeside lodging is available for this event starting at $59 per night, which includes secured covered parking and a car wash area for exhibitors. To receive this heavily discounted rate, guests can call 800.525.0892 and mention the code: DEVENT.
In Ski Country, biking is to summer as skiing is to winter, or is it fishing? Or golfing? In any case, between Winter Park and SolVista Basin, two wheelers have plenty of trails to cover this weekend.
SolVista Bike Park at Granby Ranch proudly opens its world-class cycling course over Labor Day Weekend for the Sol Survivor race, which is part of the Mountain States Cup Race series. Sol Survivor will see hundreds of world-class cyclists competing in several different categories, and spectators on-hand to take in the downhill thrills at the competition. SolVista is still abuzz from the recent USA Cycling Mountain Bike National Championships, which were held on its recently-expanded course. SolSurvivor will last from September 4th through September 7th, with special lodging deals available.
Winter Park is finishing off its FreeRide Fridays event series on Friday, September 4th. The Colorado version of TGIF, the resort offers free outdoor movies and music for guests on Fridays.
Steamboat has gone to the dogs with this competition that has a style all its own. The Steamboat Stockdog Challenge is a western competition that tests the skills of dog-trainers at their canine’s ability to herd sheep in different styles on command. The competition lasts from September 5th through September 7th.