During the past four years, I’ve had the opportunity to speak to many within, and outside of our community about what the 2015 World Alpine Ski Championships will mean to this sport and this valley, and share with them the vision we have for these championships.
Now, with under 300 days to go until our Opening Ceremonies, it’s so gratifying to see that many of those ideas and concepts that we imagined to be part of our championships are coming to fruition ... and that so many in our community have been a part of helping us to realize that reality!
For us from the start, the championships had to be about more than ski racing. Don’t get me wrong, we love the ski racing part of 2015 and couldn’t be more excited that our hometown girls, Lindsey and Mikaela, are such a big part of that. But we have always believed that these championships had the opportunity to showcase greatness off of the race course as well. In essence, we want to paint the backdrop for all of the races, wrapping up the 2015 World Championships in a bright, colorful and fun package for the entire world to open through our festivals, ceremonies and hospitality programs.
What’s Special About Us
When we welcome the world to our valley, we want them to be able to enjoy all of the things that we think are special about this community. Everything, from skiing the great powder and open Back Bowls to our exceptional culinary experiences, music and people — those are the things we think make the Vail Valley so special and different from other resorts around the world. Our celebrations and festivals provide this community with an opportunity for the rest of the world to better understand us.
We will accomplish this through our Opening Ceremonies, slated to be held in Golden Peak on Feb. 2, and every night after that. Our official medals ceremonies will be a party waiting to happen, with state of the art light shows, free nightly concerts and spectacular fireworks on tap to help punctuate the ultimate athletic performance of winning a World Championships medal. On a related note, renowned fashion designer Peter Som has agreed to design the official awards uniforms.
Snow to Show
Throughout the Championships, we will have music as the thread that ties everything together, primarily with our musical experience, “Snow to Show.” Snow to Show will roll out a wide variety of musical genres and locations, some of them where you might least expect it. Maybe these musicians will “appear” in some likely locales, such as the Red Tail Stadium or Championships Plaza, while others may be sitting next to you on the chairlift or set up at the top of the escalators in Beaver Creek.
The more formal element of Snow to Show will include a collection of headliner concerts, including Russian opera sensation Anna Netrebko, performing at the Vilar Performing Arts Center on Feb. 5. Other national and international artists will be added to this list in the coming months.
And then there will be the Contemporary American theme that will be interwoven throughout the entire event, whether it is from a “look” standpoint or the overall day-to-day experience for participants. This experience will feature components such as World Championships cheerleaders, daily Apres Avon festivities and an “I Love Vail 2015” free community celebration on Valentine’s Day.
So, while 2015 is undoubtedly about ski racing, at the heart of it, these championships are about you and about us. I invite you to be a part of this great celebration. We can use your help in so many ways. Join our volunteer crew, have your business support the event, come to the races, concerts and events or all of the above.
And, if you have an idea, share it with us. If you have a great connection to a musician or celebrity or someone else you think would help make these the best championships ever, then share it with us. As a community we have 14 days to tell the rest of the world about who we are, and to make them want to come back in the future.
We couldn’t be more proud of this community, and I know you are too. Be a part of Dream it. Live it. Share it.
Ceil Folz is president of the Vail Valley Foundation and the 2015 World Championships Organizing Committee. The 2015 World Championships are scheduled for Feb. 2-15.