My Christmas wishes have already been granted (see photo above) in the form of a very good early season of snowfall so far at Vail and Beaver Creek, and it appears as if the Snow Gods are still in a charitable mood, with more snow in the forecast Friday night and then right into next week. The holiday crowds, and assorted celebrity guests, will no doubt be pleased.
I mentioned celebs because a 2016 holiday celebrity roundup I did for People Magazine and re-posted on RealVail.com (Taylor Swift vs. Dakota Johnson) is garnering some additional web traffic of late and causing my mind to blissfully wander from the Trumpster fire going on in Washington right now to the more peaceful permutations of escapism in and to the Vail Valley.
I haven’t heard a lot of buzz lately about who’s in town (so feel free to ping me with any sightings). I did see that Today Show West Coast correspondent Natalie Morales recently closed on a $3.5-million Lodge at Vail unit, sparking reminiscences of former ET host Mary Hart buying a unit the Red Lion many, many years ago. She and her hubby weren’t big music fans.
Speaking of, we’ve had some solid jams so far this season with Nathaniel Rateliff turning in a stellar if somewhat frosty set at Vail Snow Days on Dec. 14. A couple of weeks earlier the Birds of Prey World Cup ski races featured some fine performances, including a private show with Edwin McCain and Darius Rucker jamming at the Vail Chophouse.
And now comes news that one of the best events for attracting big-name musical acts, the annual Burton US Open Snowboarding Championships (featuring the sport’s top names like Shaun White, Chloe Kim et al), has re-upped for three more years (see release below). Having already been in Vail for six years now, the Open has brought acts like Macklemore to town in years past.
As for skiing, we definitely are going to have a white Christmas in Vail; the only question now is just how fluffy it will be.
“After mostly dry weather on Friday, the first storm should bring 4-8 inches to the central and northern mountains on Friday night and Saturday, with Saturday being a powder day,” Opensnow.com meteorologist Joel Gratz wrote early Friday morning. “Then the next storm should bring 3-6+ inches to the same area on Sunday night into Monday. The next system will take a southerly track, likely bringing powder to the southern mountains on Wednesday and to all mountains on Thursday.”
Now here’s that press release on the US Open returning for the next three seasons … at least:
Burton Snowboards and Vail Sign Three-Year
Extension for Burton U∙S∙Open Snowboarding Championships
Contract Secures Event in Vail Through 2021
BURLINGTON, Vt. & VAIL, Colo. (December 20, 2018) Burton Snowboards, the Town of Vail, and Vail Mountain officially announced today a three-year contract extension that will keep the Burton U∙S∙Open Snowboarding Championships in Vail, Colorado through 2021.
“During the last six years that the U∙S∙Open has taken place at Vail, the event has grown its legacy as the premier rider-driven snowboard event in the world,” said Jake Burton, Founder and Chairman of Burton. “Vail is an incredible destination that offers an ideal setup for the Open to host the best riders in the world. It’s been my snowboarding home-away-from-home for more than 25 years, and we’re proud to continue to call Vail the home of the U∙S∙Open.”
Since 2013, Vail has hosted the Burton U∙S∙Open, and this season marks the 37th annual event, which runs from February 25 – March 2, 2019. The Burton U∙S∙Open, which first took place in Vermont in 1982, is the longest-running snowboarding competition in the world.
“The Burton U∙S∙Open is one of Vail’s signature winter events and is the most prestigious event in snowboarding,” said Dave Chapin, Town of Vail Mayor. “We are honored to have our destination be host to it. The competition venue on Vail Mountain provides such great access for spectators, and the free concerts and activations throughout the village really make it a world-class event.”
The U∙S∙Open takes place at Vail’s Golden Peak, with a festival village in the base area, a full lineup of free activities and experiences throughout the Vail area and free concerts in the evening in the Solaris area.
“To have the Burton U∙S∙Open at Vail through 2021 signifies the impact the event has had on the destination and how successful the partnership between Vail Mountain, The Town of Vail and Burton has been,” said Doug Lovell, chief operating officer of Vail Mountain. “The U∙S∙Open brings in Olympic-caliber athletes from around the world in an event that has become synonymous with Vail. The vibe and energy of the event and throughout the village during the weekend is like nothing on earth, and it is truly a great experience for our guests and the community.”
For ongoing updates and info please visit www.BurtonUSOpen.com and follow #BurtonUSOpen throughout the season.