Running alongside the Freeride World Tour this year will be Freeride Fest, the first of what Sarah Windsor hopes will become an annual event celebrating Revelstoke’s freeride culture and the high calibre athletes that call the town home. “Down the road, if the Freeride World Tour doesn’t come again or moves on to another venue, or whatever happens, we still have that Freeride Fest that’s our own thing to do for Revelstoke, locally,” she said.
This year’s event is being organized by Izzy Lynch and she has put together a series of events both on and off the mountain that will run alongside the tour.
The fest kicks off this Friday, Jan. 4, at 7 p.m. with the Biglines.com Kick Off Party at the Big Eddy Pub. The party will feature presentations of several burly first descents by local ski legends Doug Sproule, Kevin Hjertaas and Johnny Foon. That will be followed by music by gypsy jazz band Gadjology.
On Saturday is Shred With the Stars, a chance to ski and snowboard with some of the top athletes from the FWT. Sign up is through the Revelstoke Outdoors Centre and the clinic starts at the top of the Revelation Gondola at 1 p.m. That night there is an athlete’s welcome party at Wino’s.
On Sunday, The Cabin is hosting the Pink Taco Posse, an all-girl snowboard session featuring guest riders from the FWT. Meet at the top of the Revelation Gondola at noon. The after party is at The Cabin at 3:30 p.m.
The official opening ceremonies of the FWT take place at the base of Revelstoke Mountain Resort Sunday at 6 p.m. The competitors will draw their bibs to determine the start order for the event.
The action then moves to The Cabin for a 3X3 bowl off between locals and athletes & sponsors of the FWT. Call The Cabin at 250-837-2144 to enter.
The competition is set for Monday, Jan. 7, weather pending. If it goes off, the awards ceremony is scheduled for the base of RMR at 5 p.m. That night, John Jenkins will play at the official competition wrap-up party at the Last Drop, starting at 9 p.m.
On Tuesday, ladies are asked to grab their friends and show up at the top of the Stoke Chair at 1 p.m. for Get the Girls Out – an all female flash mob with female athletes of the FWT (if they’re not competing).
That night, the Art of Freeriding Pro Photographer Challenge takes place at the Revelstoke Performing Arts Centre. From Jan. 4-7. five photographers will have teamed up with their athletes for four days of shooting. On Tuesday, they will present the slideshows of their photos from RMR and surrounding backcountry. Tickets are $15 and proceeds go to StokeFM. The apres party is Benoit’s Wine Bar.
On Wednesday, the Village Idiot is hosting a special VIDIOTS competition. Bring in your best ski or snowboard video for a chance to win a prize. Later, Trevor Andrew plays at The Cabin and Wicked Wednesday’s will take hold of the River City Pub.
On Thursday, the third annual retro ski day takes place at the Roxy Theatre starting at 6:30 p.m. Come decked out in your best retro ski gear to take in the movie Ski Patrol and show support for RMR’s patrol and avalanche dog handlers. Tickets are $10 and proceeds go to Revelstoke Canine Search and Rescue Dogs.
Afterwards there is a memorial party for Jim Jack, the former president of the International Freeskiing Association and former head judge of the Freeskiing World Tour, who died in an avalanche near Steven’s Pass, Washington, last February. Stuck On Honey will provide the tunes, starting at 9 p.m. at the Big Eddy Pub.
On Friday, hip hop group The Ripple Effect will play a free lunch hour show at Revelstoke Secondary School. Admission is by donation to the food bank. That night, come out to ‘80s bingo at the Big Eddy Pub to raise money for the Live It! Love It! Foundation.
On Saturday, Jan. 12, the last possible weather day for the event, the final party will be at the River City Pub, where DJ Praiz will hit the decks.
“I think Izzy’s done a really good job,” said Windsor. “It looks like a good, diverse amount of activities every day. It’s not just a party in a bar.”