Ski resort planning big party for opening day
As if skiing for free on opening day weren’t enough, Crested Butte Mountain Resort is turning this year’s opening day into a birthday bash. The final hurrah after a year-long 50th anniversary celebration, the festivities will begin in time for the first chair on November 23 and continue throughout the day.
While most Crested Buttians are fashionably late, those who are fashionably early will be greeted with hot drinks, pastries and free lift tickets. Champagne will be poured at 8:30 a.m. and the ribbon cut at 8:45 a.m.
After the first chair heads up the slopes at 8:59 a.m., KBUT DJs will broadcast live from the Butte 66 deck from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. Starting at 11 a.m., every hour at the top of the hour, the Butte 66 deck will feature everybody’s favorite birthday party games, including the town’s largest Ski Pole Piñata and KBUT Musical Chairs. (Yes, there will be prizes).
At 2 p.m., the KBUT DJs will hand over the mike to local musician Justin Howard. Howard performs a unique music looping technique, building up to a full sound one element at a time. He’ll be followed by local bluegrass legend Drew Emmitt at 3:30 p.m.
Like any classic Crested Butte party, costumes and swag will be key. Pose in your hottest attire at the Joy Warrior photo booth on the Butte 66 deck and take advantage of drink specials while you’re there.
For folks heading out onto the slopes, several lifts will be open: Peach Tree, Magic Carpet, Red Lady and Teocalli. Once the full line of lifts open, look for changes at the newly remodeled Paradise Warming House and at the top of Painter Boy. In place of Camp4 Coffee, you’ll find Ten Peaks Beach, where you can take a break with expanded deck seating.
CBMR has also started Phase 1 of renovations to the Treasury building, fixing up the exterior and the landscaping. They are also building a yurt to serve the zip line, which will continue during winter with two-hour tours for $59.
The improvements set the stage for the season. According to Jeff Moffett, director of Crested Butte vacations, room nights are up 8 percent and group room nights are up 7 percent.
This year’s visiting groups include the National Brotherhood of Skiers, the Austrian Alpine Snowboard Team, which will be training in Crested Butte for four days prior to December’s World Cup in Telluride, Yoga Rocks the Butte and the Crested Butte Songwriting Festival, formerly known as Country in the Rockies.
Coming on Martin Luther King weekend, the songwriting event will make its return with 100 singer-songwriters coming to Crested Butte. Events are planned for the Center for the Arts and restaurants in town.
CBMR has also recruited groups that might not make the headlines, but provide a valuable source of revenue, including the Texas and Alabama Defense Lawyers’ Associations and the Veterinary Orthopedic Society.
But first, there’s a birthday to be celebrated and a free lift ticket to be had. So don your finest costume and head for the slopes on opening day, this Wednesday, November 23.