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Students asked to submit art for 10th Mountain Division documentary

Kids, how would you feel about having your artwork featured in a movie?

Parents, how would you like to have an art project that keeps kids occupied during these days away from school while they are also learning a valuable history lesson?

All elementary school students are invited to draw their version of the 10th Mountain Division, the winter warfare unit created by the United States Army during World War II that trained just south of Vail at Camp Hail and is credited with creating the outdoor industry, especially area ski resorts, as we know it today.

The art contest was thought up by long-time local Chris Anthony, who is a professional skier-turned-filmmaker. Anthony played a big role in “Climb to Glory,” a documentary about the 10th Mountain Division and is currently working on “Mission Mt. Mangart” which explores the time frame of what the 10th Mountain Division was doing after the end of the battles in Italy during World War II.

With kids home from school due to the coronavirus and parents looking for ways to keep them busy, Anthony figured he’d host an art contest and feature the winner in his documentary. “This film will ultimately be used for educational purposes. The story of the 10th Mountain Division is a wonderful way to share American and world history,” Anthony said. 

To get the word out, Anthony posted about the contest on social media last Friday with the help of friend and iconic ski racer, Mikaela Shiffrin. Mikaela starred in a video made at her home that outlined the rules for the contest.

“Mikaela and I have talked about the history of the 10th Mountain Division in passing and she was intrigued enough to be part of the documentary I am working on. Mikaela also understands the importance of creative education,” Anthony said. “I pitched her the idea and she thankfully wanted to be part of it. It’s very special to have her involved.” 

“Mission Mt. Mangart” is a passion project for Anthony, who said that people kept on coming to him with stories about what the 10th Mountain Division was doing after the battles in Italy during World War II.

“The story goes that on June 3, 1945, a ski race was held in the former Yugoslavia. It was hosted and put together by the men of the 10th Mountain Division and nowhere in our libraries is this ski race documented, yet they celebrated it over in Slovenia,” Anthony said.  

Anthony believes that the story of the 10th Mountain Division is an entertaining way to inspire youngsters to take an interest in history. He has been working with kids for the past 20 years through a partnership with Colorado Ski Country. Seven years ago, he started his own nonprofit to elevate youth through educational enrichment activities in and out of the classroom with the Chris Anthony Youth Initiative Project.

The contest deadline is May 1. All elementary students who are participating are being asked to showcase the spirit of the legendary ski troop. This can include the mountains, the men, the women, the skiing, Camp Hale or their time in Italy.

“Mission Mt. Mangart” is a work in progress. Anthony is in post-production right now with a deadline in June. The premiere is supposed to take place in Bovec, Slovenia during the celebration of the 75th anniversary of the ending of WWII as well as the 75th anniversary of the first post-WWII ski race held on Mt. Mangart. “Hopefully the premiere in Slovenia will still happen,” Anthony said. “It all depends on the status of the coronavirus.” Look for the Colorado premiere in Denver this fall.

To enter the contest:

  • Draw an image that embraces the spirit of the Army’s first light infantry mountain ski troop, the 10th Mountain Division. 
  • The most creative drawing will be featured in the opening prologue of the documentary “Mission Mt. Mangart.”
  • Submit your drawing and get more details at chris@chrisanthony.com 
  • Open to all elementary school students
  • Deadline is May 1st, 2020

Local yoga, cardio, barre, spin classes all online: Tricia’s weekend picks 3/20/2020

Earlier this week, the weather was nice enough to get outside and walk, run, hike and bike but it is still winter outside and the colder temperatures and precipitation will come and go. Don’t let the weather deter you from keeping a fitness routine going during the coronavirus crisis. To help you stay active, local gyms and fitness centers are helping you take the workouts home. Here’s a look at what area gyms are doing:

Revolution Power Yoga – Avon

Philosophy:

“We’re all in this together!” said Julie Kiddoo, owner of Revolution Power Yoga in Avon. “Offering online classes is a great opportunity to stay in the work, practice alongside your global yoga community and experience the power of comm-UNITY and connection.”

Offering:

Right now, we are offering daily one-hour Power classes. This is an energizing, challenging and powerful class based on Baptiste Yoga’s ‘Journey Into Power’ sequence and suitable for all levels that will leave you feeling rinsed and revitalized. Expect to move, sweat and be transformed!

Right now through March 22 classes are free and open to everyone via Zoom. We will be re-evaluating this the week of March 23. Stay connected daily on our Facebook and Instagram pages, as class times and teachers will change every day.

Take Away:

“At Revolution Power Yoga, our purpose is to elevate, transform, and empower the community to live in possibility, connection, and discovery.” Kiddoo said. “We will come out of this stronger together.”

PeloDog Studio – Avon

Philosophy:

“The main reason we did this is simple, we wanted to offer a free, easy and effective way to keep people moving and fit in the comfort of their own home,” said Jen Kaplan, owner of PeloDog Studio in Avon. “The community at my studio is so important to me and I wanted to offer some, albeit small, means to stay connected to each other and the studio.”

Offering:

I am certified in a variety of fitness modalities and will be offering a variety of classes including Pilates, sculpt, core & roll, equipment-free cardio, and rides for those who do have in-home bikes. My goal is to offer variety, to keep things simple and safe, and to make workouts accessible to all levels.

All of my sessions, except for rides, will either require no props, or I will offer creative substitutes for gym equipment. For example, instead of using dumbbells for sculpt class, you can use water bottles or soup cans. 

Classes are free right now on www.vimeo.com/pelodog and you do not need to be a member to participate. All updates will be on the PeloDog’s Instagram and Facebook pages.

Take Away:

“Working out is one of the best ways to relieve stress and produce positive endorphins,” Kaplan said. “Simple workouts will do wonders to maintain physical and mental strength during this unprecedented and strange time.”

Dogma Athletica – Edwards

Philosophy:

“Humans are designed to move. It relieves stress, bolsters the immune system, and calms the mind. We are inundated with information that will create anxiety,” said Rod Connolly, owner of Dogma Athletica in Edwards. “Moving also gets your creative juices flowing so you can think outside of the box to move forward during this uncertain time.”

Offering:

We are offering Live it Lean which is metabolic conditioning, Live It Strong for functional strength and Live It Loose for active mobility. Using mindfulness, high-intensity movement and decompression to put yourself in the best place physically, mentally and emotionally.

We have both paid and complimentary offerings. You do not need to be a member but to get set up for the paid classes email Dogma Athletica general manager Jessica Moser at jessicadogma@gmail.com. To access our free “Twenty Minutes to a Better Day” class, follow Dogma Athletica on Facebook and Instagram.

Take Away:

“Look for opportunity in change. Utilize this as an impetus to practice healthy habits and self-care you may have been putting off. Get clear on what’s most important to you and focus your energies,” Connolly said. “Notice what you have in your life, not what feels missing.”

Barre Forte Vail Valley – Edwards

Philosophy:

“Community is so important. We are in this together and by supporting us, we can support you,” said Jessica Denton, co-owner of Barre Forte in Edwards with Beth Robinson. “Fitness isn’t just about burning calories it’s about having a strong mind and body.”

Offering:

We’ll be offering Barre Express, a 45-minute barre class, Sculpt class, which is a low impact total-body workout, Oula, which is a fun dance fitness class, Sculpt Yoga and Pilates Barre. We’re lucky to be able to stream classes that provide almost the same experience as a studio experience.

All current Barre Forte Vail Valley members have access. New clients will be able to purchase a drop-in, 8-class pack, or unlimited streaming. Our full schedule is on the Mindbody app or follow us on Instagram @barrefortevailvalley.

Take Away:

“Staying active and healthy is important all the time, but especially right now. The amazing thing about Barre workouts is that it truly changes your body, by using “almost” only your body.” Denton said. “Movement is really important. We all need movement mentally and emotionally.”

Endorphin – Eagle Ranch

Philosophy:

Endorphin’s mission is to deliver the best experience by the best instructors to the happiest community. “We are all about providing movement experiences and making people feel welcomed and supported,” said Corina Lindley, owner of Endorphin in Eagle Ranch. “During this COVID-19 timeframe, we want to keep that feeling going virtually by providing online classes.”

Offering:

We will be offering up to three classes a day, free of charge to anyone. If you are already a member or want to join with our introductory rate you can do that. But, if you are experiencing a financial crisis due to COVID-19, we still want you to participate and we want to support you.

As for classes, we’ll have HIIT, Barre, Yoga, Metabolic Conditioning and other group classes where little or no weights or other equipment is necessary. Access classes through Zoom once you create an account at www.myendorphin.com.

We have also allowed our members to take two to three pieces of equipment to their home, including stationary bikes, to use to stay active in addition to going outside.

Take Away:

“The energy and endorphins you get from working out will help sustain you and keep your stress levels down to keep you well. The U.S. Preventative Services Task Force recommends at least 30 minutes a day of exercise for adults and to 60 minutes a day for kids,” Lindley said. “If you are creative, you can still get your exercise in during these trying times.”

These are just a few gyms in the area that are providing online access to workouts. Check with your favorite gym to see if they are offering anything online at this time.

Habitat for Humanity virtually raises money

Much to Celebrate, More to Build. This motto still rings true for Habitat for Humanity Vail Valley despite the coronavirus.

Habitat for Humanity’s local chapter was about to celebrate 25 years of serving Eagle and Lake counties by hosting its annual Carpenters’ Ball on March 14, but like most other events, the Carpenters’ Ball was canceled. Staff members decided to take precautions even before the information came from the state and county to cancel gatherings of over 50 people.

The event was set to host over 400 people to the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek and has been a popular fundraiser with locals for the past 21 years. The Carpenters’ Ball is Habitat for Humanity Vail Valley’s largest fundraiser of the year and accounts for 30% of the income that must be generated this year. “All dollars from the event fund the permits, excavation and foundations of the six new homes that will break ground in May,” said Julie Kapala, Of Habitat for Humanity Vail Valley.

During the past 25 years, Habitat for Humanity Vail Valley has built 87 homes throughout six communities and impacted 300 children with the help of 158,635 volunteer hours. Though canceling the signature event was tough, they knew there was more work to be done and started assembling ways to turn a physical event into a virtual one.

“As soon as we knew that canceling the event was a real possibility, we shifted to internal discussions of hosting a virtual event. We found some good examples online from Seattle-based nonprofits that had successfully hosted online events, so we decided to go for it,” Kapala said.

Habitat’s original event was going to consist of a Gift Card Wall, where you could purchase gift certificates right away and not wait until you were the highest bidder.

“We have more than 100 gift certificates to restaurants, retailers, spas and more. Most gift certificates are priced below their value,” Kapala said. Items are available for purchase until March 28th.

The auction committee had gathered it’s coveted “Tool Belt” packages, where multiple goods and services were bundled together such as rounds of golf at area golf clubs and spa treatments at multiple locations. Bidding closes on March 28.

The live auction contains some fantastic experiences like a wine tasting weekend in Napa Valley, California, a wine or whiskey (you choose) dinner pairing for ten. There is also a seven-night stay in a beautiful home in Sea Island, Georgia. Bidding on the live auction items closes on March 21.  

Normally, there is a paddle raise where attendees raise their paddles for various amounts of money at the Carpenter’s Ball. There is a virtual paddle raise on the website and the amount of money raised will be matched, dollar for dollar, up to $100,000 through March 28. Habitat is hoping to raise $200,000 to fund six foundations for all six homes that they are building in 2020.

Another part of the evening is the video featured each year. The video normally showcases a family whose lives have been changed by having a Habitat for Humanity home. This year, Guy Ayrault, founding member and longtime volunteer, was the star of the video for his outstanding dedication to the mission of Habitat for Humanity. Ayrault has worked on all 87 homes that Habitat for Humanity Vail Valley has completed.

“There are a lot of people who are struggling to get by and to have a stable housing situation and Habitat does give them something they really couldn’t find anywhere else,” Ayrault said in the video.

View the video, get a great deal on the gift cards, Toolbelt auction items or treat yourself to one of the live auction items and help support our local chapter of Habitat for Humanity, which is ramping up building capacity to build eight homes (a 33% increase) in 2021.

Despite not being able to host their annual fundraiser in a traditional way, Habitat for Humanity is also looking on the bright side. “One benefit to hosting a virtual event is that we can reach a broader audience,” Kapala said. To donate and follow the progress of this virtual event, go to bit.ly/Virtual-Carpenters-Ball.

Illusions, silent disco, a shamrock shuffle and more: Tricia’s weekend picks 3/13/20

Magic and music at the Vilar

Update at 7:28 p.m.: Vail Valley Foundation’s Director of Public Relations and the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater Director Tom Boyd confirmed to the Vail Daily in an email at 7:28 p.m. that events at the Vilar Performing Arts Center will be canceled through the end of the winter season.

The Vilar Performing Arts Center has been busy with all types of shows this spring. Friday brings in the wonder of illusionist Rick Thomas and on Sunday Colin Hay, former frontman of 80s Australian hit makers Men at Work takes the stage in a solo performance.

Illusionist Rick Thomas has been performing mind-blowing illusions in Las Vegas for the last 15 years and has performed over 600 shows per year. Thomas has earned several awards including “Magician of the Year” by the Academy of Magical Arts and magic’s highest recognition “Illusionist of the World” by the World Magic Awards. He’s traveled to over 50 countries across the globe and will set foot on the Vilar stage on Friday night at 7 p.m.

View Thomas’ outstanding showmanship and stage presence up close as he blends magic, music, comedy and dance into an intriguing and innovative show. Here’s praise for Thomas:

“Fabulous Entertainment for the Entire Family!” – Chicago Tribune

“Best Magician, Period!” – Showbiz Magazine

“Stunning!” – L.A. Times

“EPIC!” – New York Times

“The Most Amazing Show…Brilliant!” – TripAdvisor

Tickets are $48 for adults, $29 for kids or a Family 4-Pack is $150. This show is also included in the Vilar’s ticket package: Pick 3 Shows for $90; Pick 5 Shows for $175; Pick 8 Shows for $240. For more information, visit www.vilarpac.org.

One thing fans of the Vilar Performing Arts Center rave about is the intimacy of the performances they get to see. Colin Hay’s performance should be no different. Here, learn more about the stories behind his days as the frontman of Men At Work, his tour with Ringo Starr and His All Starr Band and his stints on television shows like “Scrubs.”

At Sunday’s show, which will start at 7 p.m., Hay’s set will include songs that span his career, including songs from his upcoming album for Compass Records, Men at Work hit songs including “Who Can It Be Now?,” “Down Under” and other crowd-pleasers. Expect to hear some stories behind the songs and other artistic pursuits Hay has been on during his amazing career. Tickets are $45. Visit www.vilarpac.org for more information.

Bloom and a Silent Disco for kids

Spring break is here and families from across the nation are enjoying spring skiing and all the activities that surround it. Here are a few fun things for kids to do this weekend at Beaver Creek as they celebrate spring with an event called Bloom:

Friday – Beaver Creek Plaza – 3 – 6 p.m.

Sounds of the Season with live music with the La Pompe Jazz Band from 4:50 until 6:00 p.m. and dance lessons from Swingin’ Denver at 3:30 and 5 p.m.

Saturday – Beaver Creek Plaza – 4 – 8:30 p.m.

Family Fun Fest – Kids go from game tent to game tent earning tokens that can go toward Beaver Creek themed prizes- 4-5:30 p.m.

Silent Disco – dance to your own beat while wearing wireless headphones, often with different musical themes depending on the channel each person is tuned in to. Pick up your complimentary headphones near the ice rink –5:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Sunday – Beaver Creek Plaza – 3 to 6 p.m.

Color & Flower Festival – Crafts, coloring stations and some fun surprises. For more information, visit www.beavercreek.com.

Shamrock Shuffle

Update at 8:03 p.m. from the Vail Recreation District: This weekend’s Krueger Family Shamrock Shuffle will no longer take place in person at the Vail Nordic Center and has been modified to a virtual event, please visit www.vailrec.com on Friday for more details.

Don your green gear and head out to the Vail Nordic Center for the 9th annual Krueger Family Shamrock Shuffle on Saturday. This shuffle is a fun walk or run and has become a St. Patrick’s Day tradition whether you are Irish or not. Participate in the 5k or 10k race and bring the kids for the 1k fun run. The Vail Nordic Center’s trails still have plenty of snow for those wearing snowshoes or Yaktrax, as well those wearing running shoes, which is a non-prize-eligible category.

Prizes will be given out to the top three women and top three men in both the snowshoe and Yaktrax 10K race categories. A free raffle for all racers will complete the fun with great prizes from local businesses as well as nationally-known brands. he Krueger Family Shamrock Shuffle is the final race in the three-part Vail Grail winter race series. A limited number of snowshoes will be available at the Vail Nordic Center.

The race starts at 4 p.m. followed by an after-race party at the Vail Nordic Center. For more information, go to www.vailrec.com.

“Animation Stars” takes the stage at Battle Mountain

Over 50 local students ages 8 to 18 have been working hard learning the music and the dance moves for the spring production of “Animation Stars.” This performance is a high-energy revue featuring songs and scenes from the best recent animation movies. Hear songs from “Brave,” “Moana,” “Jungle Book,” “Tangled,” “Despicable Me,” “Monsters Inc.,” “Pocahontas” and plenty more.

Annah Scully, the founder and executive director of the Vail Performing Arts Academy and her team of talented professionals molds these kids into stage masters and always puts on an inspiring show.

“Our young cast has been meeting each Sunday afternoon since January, and thanks to the amazing talents of our Artistic Director, Colin Meiring; our Assistant Choreographer, Maria Barry; our Vocal Coach, Melinda Carlson and Costumer, Val Watts these young performers have learned 19 numbers in ten intensive-but-super-fun rehearsals,” Scully said.

Showtime is at 6:30 p.m. both Friday and Saturday at Battle Mountain High School. Tickets are general admission and cost $15 if you pay via cash or check and $17 if you use a credit card and can be purchased at the door. Go to www.vpaa.org for more information.

Women’s Ski Demo Day

With all the sales on equipment, springtime is the time to try out a new pair of skis and get in on the savings. Several brands of skis will be available to test out this weekend at the Second Saturday Free Ski Demo Day at the base of Lionshead from 9 a.m. until 2:30 p.m.  

Outdoor Divas and Vail Sports will have tents set up with demo skis from Atomic, Black Crows, Blizzard, Elan, Head, K2, Kastle, Legend, Line, Nordica, Rossignol, Salomon, Stockli and Volkl. Take a pair out and make a lap on the Eagle Bahn Gondola, or hop into the Back Bowls and see how they perform.

To enhance your experience and help you dial in your selection even more, there will be instructors from Vail Ski And Snowboard School available to take a run or two with you. The female coach will help you decide if the ski you try is a good fit for you.

It doesn’t get any easier to try skis before you buy. With tons of brands to choose from, experts there to dial in the bindings to fit your boots and get you on your way in no time and professional ski instructors to help you make the right decision, take advantage of this demo day and find a new pair of skis you love. For more information, go to www.outdoordivas.com.

Barstool races, ski joring, spring celebrations for kids and more: Tricia’s weekend picks 3/6/20

10th Mountain Legacy Parade

To honor Vail’s heritage, Vail Mountain and the Town of Vail will host the 10th Mountain Legacy Parade along with fireworks. Friday at 6 p.m. guests are invited to watch skiers dressed in traditional 10th Mountain Division ski trooper uniforms as they weave down the hill in a torchlight ski down to the base of Gondola One.

Following the torchlight ski down, a parade of military veterans, also in traditional uniforms, will march from Gondola One down Bridge Street, across the Covered Bridge and will finish at the 10th Mountain statue along Gore Creek.

From there, guests are welcomed to the recently renovated Colorado Snowsports Museum, which will stay open after the parade for guests to visit and learn about Colorado’s ski history through the 10th Mountain Division exhibit.

The 10th Mountain Division is the winter warfare unit created by the United States Army during World War II that trained just south of Vail at Camp Hale. Pete Seibert, a veteran of the 10th Mountain Division, along with Earl Eaton, who worked for the Civilian Conservation Corps in Glenwood Springs, first climbed Vail Mountain during the winter of 1957 and looked down at the future Sun Up and Sun Down Bowls and the rest is history.

This is the last Legacy parade of the season. For more information, please visit www.vail.com.

Bring to kids to Bloom

March is here and that means that many schools are out around the country and families are flocking to Beaver Creek. After the slopes close, let the kids enjoy Bloom, a spring festival that celebrates the change of seasons. This outdoor event runs from now until March 28. Here’s a look at what’s going on near the ice rink at Beaver Creek this weekend and part of next week:

Saturday: Family Fun Fest – 4-5:30 p.m. – Kids go from game tent to game tent earning tokens that can go toward Beaver Creek themed prizes.

Sunday: Color & Flower Festival – 3 to 6 p.m. – Crafts, coloring stations and some fun surprises

Monday: Movie Night with “The Greatest Showman” – Circus performers at 6 p.m., movie starts at 7:20 p.m.

Tuesday: Fresh Picked Spring  – 3 to 6 p.m. – Flowerpot decorating and lemonade that guests can top with fresh herbs and seasonings

Wednesday: Spring on the Mountain – 3 to 6 p.m. – Face painters, balloon twisters and animal education

For a full schedule, visit www.beavercreek.com.

Barstool races in Minturn

There are a lot of competitions held in Eagle County. From the World Cup alpine ski races to the Burton US Open Snowboarding Championships, a lot of athletic talent comes through the valley. The Minturn Barstool Races may not have the type of athletic prowess and prestige that those other competitions have, but it probably is the competition that has the most fun.

Quirky and crafty are two words to describe the Minturn Barstool races. Teams design their own device that is able to withstand a descent down the hill at the Little Beach Park in Minturn. The teams also get to come up with quirky names and themes that go with their rig.

The contest is a double-elimination style contest and teams can compete in the Bustling Barstool or Anything Goes categories. In the Bustling Barstool category, teams need to attach a barstool that is at least 27 inches high to a pair of skis or a snowboard. In the Anything Goes category, teams can get creative with what they weld or nail together in hopes of it getting down the hill with a rider on top of it. There’s not a lot of rules or regulations, but each rider is required to wear a helmet while going down the course.

This goofy event is fun to participate in and it’s also fun to watch. Spectators can line the course at Little Beach Park this Saturday and the races happen between noon and 3 p.m. The Minturn Barstool races raise money for the Minturn Community Fund, which works to enrich the culture and lifestyle of the historic mining town by putting on events like the Barstool Races, as well as the free summer concert series and more.

The Minturn Saloon will host an after-race party with Vail Brewing Company from 3 to 5 p.m. For more information, go to www.minturncommunityfund.org.

Leadville Ski Joring and Crystal Carnival Weekend

For three days, the town of Leadville hosts all sorts of winter sporting events, a mountain film festival and even dancing. It’s all part of the Leadville Ski Joring and Crystal Carnival Weekend that runs through Sunday.

Ski Joring is a fast-paced sport consisting of a horse pulling a skier through obstacles and jumps. You can get involved by riding a horse, skiing behind a horse, bid on a team during the Calcutta or spectate the event which is on Harrison Avenue in Leadville. Kids can also get a taste of ski joring by being pulled by a snowmobile. Ski joring happens between noon and 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

Before the ski joring happens, Nordic skiers are invited to hit the snow on Leadville’s main street before the horses and skiers do the next day. Lights will brighten up the sky when the Nordic skiers hit the street at 7 p.m. on Friday.

Besides ski joring, winter mountain biking also takes place during this annual festival. The Leadville Mountain Bike Series will conduct a night ride called Mineral Belt Mayhem. Bring your fat bike out and ride the 11-mile Mineral Belt loop after dark on Saturday.

In addition to those events, don’t miss the opportunity to see films at the Backcountry Film Festival at Periodic Brewing, an open house at the historic Tabor Opera House, dancing at the Elks and a paintball biathlon at Tennessee Pass Nordic Center. For a full schedule, visit www.leadvilletwinlakes.com.

Beaver Creek Running Series: Snowshoe Edition

This Sunday marks the final event of the Beaver Creek Running Series: Snowshoe Edition. Distances include a 10k and a 5k course and draws everyone from the first-time snowshoer to the veteran runner. You don’t have to run in snowshoes, you can easily stroll while enjoying the scenery of Beaver Creek.

Sunday’s event will take place up at McCoy Park, which is at the top of the Strawberry Park Express lift. After the event, head back down to Beaver Creek Village for the post-race party and awards presentation for top male and female in each age bracket for the 5k and 10k as well as the overall male and female competitors. A post-race meal is also offered as well as raffle prizes.

Registration is from 8:30-9:30 a.m. next to Beaver Creek Sports in Beaver Creek Village and the race will begin at 10:00 a.m. Sign up for this race by going to www.beavercreek.com.

Tequila tasting with Chef Richard Sandoval at Maya: varieties to drink and some authentic apps to pair it with

Can’t view the video? Click here.

What do you like to pair with tequila? If you said lime and salt, chef and restaurateur Richard Sandoval would like to expand your palate and introduce you to a different way of enjoying the blue agave-based spirit.

Sandoval, whose Latin-based restaurant concepts span from Colorado to Tokyo, was in town on Tuesday, Feb. 25 to pair his culinary creations with Cantera Negra, a family-owned and operated tequila distillery in Jalisco, Mexico. Sandoval and his team at Maya at the Westin Riverfront Resort and Spa swapped out the typical multi-course dinner with small plates.

“Instead of having four courses you’re trying seven or eight different dishes with various tequilas and it’s a little more exciting, it allows you to engage more,” said Sandoval, who had just flown to Colorado after being at the Miami Food and Wine Festival.

Even though Cantera Negra was founded more than 40 years ago, it’s only been in the United States for two years (check out how it finally got to the U.S. at www.canteranegra.com). “This time last year we were in four states and we’re now in 20 states. We started distributing to Colorado this past Labor Day,” said David Szydlik of Two Sons Imports.

Szydlik offered tastes of Cantera Negra’s silver, reposado, añejo and extra añejo tequila to Maya’s guests and was greeted with the same response he’s heard the last several months while promoting the product. 

“Usually I hear things like, ‘I can’t believe that’s tequila’ or ‘this is the smoothest and best tequila I’ve ever had,’ and I’ve been in the spirits business for almost 20 years and I’ve never seen reactions like this. It’s so consistent,” Szydlik said.

Cantera Negra also has a cafe liqueur, which has just exploded in the last four months. It’s made with Mexican espresso beans, 100% blue agave spirit and liqueur. “It’s only 40 proof, 20% alcohol but the flavor that comes out from the Mexican espresso beans is just amazing,” Szydlik said. 

The food received rave reviews as well. Sandoval paired the Acapulco-style shrimp ceviche, the guacamole and the tortilla soup with the silver tequila. The subtle flavor of the añejo paired well with the tuna tostada and the stone crab taco. The al pastor pork belly taco stood up to the reposado.

“There are over 2,000 different tequilas today. It’s amazing what different distilleries do to it, whether it’s aging it in French or American oak, they are very different,” Sandoval said. “If you compare them, each one has a different profile. It’s very interesting to see what they’ve done and it’s fun to match the flavor profile with the food.”

Burton US Open, Leap Day, sleigh ride dinners and more: Tricia’s Weekend picks 2/28/20

Burton US Open Snowboarding Championships

The Burton US Open Snowboarding Championships return to Golden Peak in Vail for the eighth year, but the event itself has been held for 38 years. This iconic snowboarding competition brings in the sport’s best veteran riders as well as up-and-coming riders to the Halfpipe and Slopestyle competitions.

The Slopestyle finals are Friday with the women’s competition beginning at 11 a.m. followed by the men’s finals at 2 p.m. On Saturday, the women will kick off the Halfpipe Finals at 11 a.m. followed by the men’s competition at 2 p.m.

This is typically the last competition of the season and attracts top-caliber riders like Red Gerard of Summit County and Zoi Sadowski Synnott of New Zealand returning to defend their Burton US Open Slopestyle titles. Scotty James of Australia and America Maddie Mastro took top honors at last year’s Halfpipe finals.

The competitions attract a crowd, so prepare for parking to fill up fast and if you want to watch the competitions along the halfpipe or slopestyle course, get there early and be prepared to trek up to the venue. You can also watch from the base areas on jumbo television screens.

Download the Burton US Open app to your phone to keep up on any schedule updates, photos and videos, a list of riders and results. Live coverage can be found on www.burtonusopen.com and on www.redbulltv.com. For the complete low down of events, go to www.burtonusopen.com.

Burton US Open – beyond the competitions

The Burton US Open base area has a festival-like atmosphere with an interactive sponsor village with fun swag and a Burton pop-up store and meet, greet and ride opportunities with the athletes.

Last fall, the snowboarding world and beyond lost Burton founder and snowboarding pioneer, Jake Burton Carpenter. To honor him, there will be a Ride with Jake and Fireworks for Jake events throughout the weekend.

For the Ride with Jake on Friday, meet at Gondola 1 at 8 a.m. and the group will go to Chair 4 and then reconvene at the top of Riva Glades for a group ride down one of Jake’s favorite runs. This is an open invitation to anyone who wants to honor him for what he did for the sport of snowboarding and the Burton US Open. On Saturday night, join the family and friends of Burton for a special fireworks display that can be viewed from the concert venue at Solaris.

Burton helps the youngest aspiring snowboarders get on the hill with Riglet Park. Strap the kids aged three to six on a tiny snowboard and watch them learn the basics of snowboarding in a fun environment at Golden Peak. This designated area features small berms, rollers and ground level features so kids can try tricks, too. Check out the free Burton demo equipment at Riglet Park as well.

Friday

Sponsor Village – 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. – Golden Peak

Ride for Jake – 8 to 10 a.m. Meet at Gondola 1, Vail Village

Meet the Riders – 1 to 2 p.m. Burton Pop-Up Shop, Golden Peak

Free Burton Concert Series and Awards – 6 p.m. Solaris Concert Stage – Big Freedia and Arrested Development

Party at Bol – 9:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. – Solaris – music by Money 2 Burn

Saturday

Sponsor Village – 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. – Golden Peak

Women’s Ride – 10-11:30 a.m. Burton Pop-Up Shop, Golden Peak

Ride with Burton Team – 1 to 2 p.m. Burton Pop-Up Shop, Golden Peak

Free Burton Concert Series and Awards – 6 p.m. Solaris Concert Stage – EVAN GIIA & Big Wild

Fireworks with the Carpenter Family – 7:45 p.m.  – Solaris Concert Stage


Burton US Open Closing Party – 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. – Dobson Ice Arena – DJ Cre8, 99 Neighbors & J Espinosa   

Party at Bol – 9:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. – Solaris – music by Gavlak  

Shut the Funk Up Silent Disco – 9 p.m. to midnight – Mountain Art Collective – 1310 Westhaven Drive, Vail.          

Leap Day

Did you notice that February has an extra day of the month this year? Saturday marks Leap Day, so take this extra day and do something special.

We use leap years to keep the calendar in sync with the seasons. It can get kind of complicated, but according to www.timeanddate.com, leap days keep our modern-day Gregorian calendar in alignment with Earth’s revolutions around the sun. If we didn’t do this, over the centuries we’d be having a Fourth of July barbecue when the snow was flying – although, it can snow during any month in Colorado, I’ve been here when it snowed on July 3 – but you get the idea.

While researching leap year, I found all sorts of folklore and traditions that happen on this day around the world. According to Lonely Planet, women could propose marriage to men on this day. It’s believed that this tradition began in Ireland in the 5th century, with a deal brokered between St. Brigid of Kildare and St. Patrick, but the tradition spread across Europe and beyond.

Also in Europe, superstition in Greece holds that marriages that take place during a leap year will end in divorce. Scottish farmers apparently worry about their livestock. There’s an old saying that states a “leap year was never a good sheep year.”

In the U.S., the city of Anthony, which straddles the borders of Texas and New Mexico, is now known as Leap Year Capital of the World. Since 1988, Anthony has hosted a celebration for leaplings (those born on Feb. 29) who travel there from all over the globe. The chance of being born on a leap day is 1 in 1,461.

Regardless of the science and folklore behind it, you get an extra day! If you say, “I wish I had more time to (fill in the blank),” do that thing with the extra 24 hours you get in 2020.

Friday Afternoon Club

Maya’s popular Winter Friday Afternoon Club returns for its second concert of the season Friday from 6 to 9 p.m. with a special evening of live blues, rock and country music by Robby and the Peoples in The Westin Riverfront lobby.

The lobby at the Westin is hopping almost every night with live music filling the great room, but they let the party go a little longer and a little louder for FAC. Don’t be afraid to get up and do a little dancing if your legs aren’t too tired after a day on the slopes.

Winter FAC guests can enjoy $3 tacos, $5 beers and $7 margaritas as well as the full menu of handcrafted cocktails, Colorado microbrews and bites served at The Lookout lobby bar. Or venture into Maya Modern Mexican Kitchen & Tequilaria and choose from more than 150 agave-based spirits and house-infused tequilas and modern Mexican fare curated by chef Richard Sandoval.

Enjoy après ski music with a stunning view of Beaver Creek. There are no reservations taken for the couches or tables throughout the lobby, so get there early to get a seat. The Westin Riverfront offers complimentary on-site valet parking for Maya diners and bar patrons, based on availability.

Allie’s Cabin Family Dinners

There are many places to have dinner in the Vail Valley, but how about traveling via an open-air sleigh to that dining destination with the whole family? Allie’s Cabin in Beaver Creek is hosting family dinners on select nights throughout the season with special pricing for adults and children.

The snowcat-driven sleigh departs from Beaver Creek Village at 5:15, 5:45, 6:15, 7:00 and 7:30 p.m. On the ride, view the stars and slopes at a time when no one is on the mountain. Once you arrive at Allie’s Cabin, exchange your boots for cozy slippers and enjoy the large fireplace and views before sitting down to either a three-course dinner for adults or a buffet for the kids.

A few tasty items to note on the three-course menu include Colorado rack of lamb, pan-fried ruby trout and elk filet mignon. The kids’ appetite will be satisfied with crowd-pleasers like white cheddar mac and cheese, roasted Boulder natural chicken and a sundae bar.

Reservations are required for the Allie’s Cabin Family Dinners, which are held on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday nights through April 4. For more information, please visit www.beavercreek.com or call 970.754.5545.

Lindsey Vonn’s big fundraiser bash is staying in Vail and it’s a Roaring ’20s theme this year

The Lindsey Vonn Foundation’s annual fundraiser will return once again to Vail this spring, according to Laura Kildow, executive director of the Lindsey Vonn Foundation and sister of the ski racing star. This themed party has become THE party of the year with fun costumes, a lively band, people doing the limbo and special guests like Jonny Moseley joining Vonn on stage. It’s all to raise money for Vonn’s various programs and scholarships that help empower girls throughout the nation.

Kildow said the party was possibly moving to Denver or elsewhere, but after further thought, they decided to keep it right here, where Vonn’s longtime friends, fans and even some of her doctors have come out to support her efforts at past events. A roaring 1920s theme is planned for this fête that is set for Friday, May 1 at the Four Seasons Resort and Residences Vail.

It’s already been a busy year for the retired Olympic and World Cup champion. The skier is not only busy planning a wedding with New Jersey Devils hockey player, P.K. Subban, she’s also been doing a lot of things she never got a chance to do while racing on the World Cup circuit.

One of those things was to inspect the downhill course at the Hahnenkamm, the celebrated and revered men’s World Cup ski race in Kitzbuhel, Austria. Fellow retired ski racer, Axel Lund Svindal of Norway gave Lindsey a tour of the course.

While in Austria for the race, Lindsey also received an award presented by Austrian Arnold Schwarzenegger. While delivering the award to Lindsey, Schwarzenegger called her the “female terminator” and praised Vonn for her generosity and giving back through her foundation. He also recommends that she tries plenty of wiener schnitzel and hazelnut schnapps while in Austria.

Vonn went straight from that event in Kitzbuhel to Munich, Germany for ISPO, the international ski industry trade show. She was up bright and early and ready to reveal new looks and collaborations she had with Briko helmets, YNIQ Goggles and Head outerwear. The skiing star signed autographs and took selfies with fans with one of her dogs, Lucy, by her side.

This week Vonn is helping promote Project Rock, the newest line of Under Armour workout wear with Duane “The Rock” Johnson. Even though she’s not competing in the race gates anymore, Vonn is still training like an Olympic athlete.

Look for more information about the Lindsey Vonn Foundation and the upcoming fundraiser in Vail, stay tuned to the website (www.lindseyvonnfoundation.org) and Vonn’s social media channels.

Skiing in St. Anton

Even though I feel extremely lucky to live near two world-class ski resorts, I love the experience you get while skiing in Europe. This past January, I had the opportunity to go to St. Anton and the surrounding villages in the Arlberg region in Austria. Vail and Beaver Creek are great, but there is just something about skiing in a place where it’s not just a sport, it’s a part of Austria’s history and culture.

The Arlberg region consists of St. Anton, St. Christof, Stuben, Zurs, Lech and Warth-Schrocken. There are more surrounding ski towns you can explore: Stubenbach, Oberlech, Zug, and Klosterle. Much of the terrain is situated in wide-open bowls. I have skied in Chamonix, France, so I was familiar with piste markers indicating the trails, but even if you’ve seen ski runs in Europe before, it still takes your breath away.

The villages are accessed by 88 lifts and there are over 300 kilometers (about 186 miles) of marked ski runs and over 200 kilometers (about 124 miles) of off-piste terrain to ski between the towns in the Arlberg region. The classification of trails is 17% expert, 40% advanced and 43% beginner. Lift tickets are 65 euros, but some hotels work with the Epic Pass if you stay there, so inquire about that if you are planning a trip to the Arlberg.

The altitude is lower as well. The valley floor is at 1,304 meters, which is about 4,200 feet above sea level and the peak altitude at Valluga is 2,811 meters, or approximately 9,200 feet above sea level. Just for comparison, Vail’s village base elevation is 8,150 and the peak at Blue Sky Basin is over 11,500 feet at the top of Pete’s Express lift.

The first day we followed the map and went from St. Anton to Lech, which is Beaver Creek’s sister city. It took pretty much all day with a brief stop for lunch on an outdoor deck at the Seekpof restaurant at the top of Zurs that had beanbag chairs where you could soak in the sun and views. Between the goulash, the hefeweizen, jet lag and the comfort of the beanbag chair, I didn’t think I would make it back out, but we still needed to get to Lech.

To illustrate how vast this place is, when we were in Warth, which is a few towns away, we started thinking that we’d better head back to make sure we caught each lift before it closed. The lifts close between 4 and 4:30 p.m. We were on the Jageralp Express at 1:50 p.m. and didn’t get to the base of St. Anton until 5 p.m. So, if you do go, keep an eye on the time.

When we were there, we had three days of warmer-than-normal temperatures and blue skies each day. The level of snowfall averages out to around nine meters (about 350 inches) during a classic Arlberg winter.

The skiing is amazing, but learning more about the culture and the sport’s history in Austria was also part of the trip. This area is known as the “cradle of skiing” with its Ski Club Arlberg formed in 1901 (There is an exchange that goes on between the athletes at Ski and Snowboard Club Vail and the athletes at Ski Club Arlberg each year). The first ski race in the Alps was hosted in the Arlberg in 1904. The founding of the first ski school was in 1921.

Speaking of history, the hotel we stayed at was a pretty historical spot. In St. Anton, we stayed at the Schneider Hof Hotel-Garni, which was the home to Austrian ski pioneer and the founder of the Austrian Method style of skiing, Hannes Schneider. Schneider was world-renown for his contribution to the sport. He built the Sporthaus Hannes Schneider in 1922. Here, he and his wife, Ludwina Seeberger entertained everyone from royalty to celebrities who would come to St. Anton to ski.

They lived at that house until 1938. Hitler wanted Schneider to teach his troops to ski and he refused. He was an opponent of the Nazi regime and immigrated to North Conway, New Hampshire in 1939. It’s a fascinating story of how Schneider was able to come to the United States and was also able to keep the property throughout World War II.

Today, Hannes Schneider’s grandson Christoph and wife Hannah run the hotel. Hannah explained the history of the hotel and how they ended up in Austria. She grew up with Christoph in New Hampshire and they run the hotel during the winter months and in the summer they go back to North Conway with their Jack Russell terrier.

It wouldn’t be a European ski trip without après ski and everything you’ve heard about après-ski over there is true. The French may have coined the term, but Austria does it best.

Although there are plenty of bars in the villages, it’s tradition to stop at an après ski hotspot up on the hill. From vast decks with great views to two-story dance floors with everyone dancing in their ski boots, it’s a sight to behold. The music plays into the early part of the evening and the skiers still have to find their way back to the base with just the lights of the town to guide them.

Après ski is as much a part of the day as skiing itself. We met people from Sweden, France, Austria, Germany, Russia and the Netherlands. There is nothing quite like having the entire bar, still in their ski boots, singing along, on pitch or off-key, to “Sweet Caroline” halfway around the world.

I think world peace could be solved in an Austrian après ski bar.

Vertical challenges, history hikes, live music and more: Tricia’s weekend picks 2/21/20

Talons Challenge at Beaver Creek

For 17 years, skiers and snowboarders have taken to the Talons area of Beaver Creek to conquer 14 of the resort’s toughest black and double black diamond runs in order to have bragging rights and a sense of satisfaction after conquering over 26,000 vertical feet in one day. Are you ready for the Talons Challenge?

This Saturday, competitors of all ages will tackle the steep terrain on Grouse Mountain, Birds of Prey and Larkspur Bowl. In between runs you can always stop and rest at the Talons restaurant, nestled at the base of the three lifts that service this area. The Talons restaurant will also play host to the Talons Challenge après-ski party from 12 to 4 p.m. The celebration will continue down in Beaver Creek Village from 4 to 6 p.m. with additional entertainment and giveaways.

The physical challenge is also a fundraiser for SOS Outreach, an organization that uses adventure sports to teach underserved youth core values and leadership development. At the base of each lift, kids from SOS Outreach programs and volunteers will be there to keep you honest by marking your lanyard after each run. The kids have also been known to give you plenty of words of encouragement to keep your energy levels and spirits up.

A $40 registration includes your access to the Talons Challenge, a lanyard and credential for tracking your runs, special 17th Edition Talons Challenge swag and food. Please note that your lift ticket is not included in registration.

From $160, the Ultimate Talon limited edition package gets you additional perks beyond the standard Talons Challenge registration. If you go the Ultimate route you will get a commemorative Talons Challenge Vanir backpack from Helly Hansen (a $130 value) as well as a $40 donation to SOS Outreach and discounted drinks at the village après-ski event. The Ultimate Talon packages tend to sell out. To learn more go to www.beavercreek.com and search for Signature Events. 

Ski with Jonny Moseley

Vail Mountain also has a ski benefit on Saturday. Can Do MS is calling it “powder with a purpose” and wants everyone to come out for its annual Ski for MS event, which brings teams from all over the region to Vail to participate in amateur races, a costume contest and an après-ski party to help fund its programs for those living with Multiple Sclerosis (MS).  

The locally-based Can Do MS organization was formerly known as The Jimmy Heuga Center for Multiple Sclerosis. Jimmy Heuga was an Olympic bronze medalist in alpine skiing. He and teammate Billy Kidd made America proud when Kidd finished second and Heuga finished third on the podium in Innsbruck, Austria at the 1964 Olympic Games.

Heuga was diagnosed with MS early in his career and he revolutionized treatment with a whole-body approach. He wanted to focus on the things that those with MS can do versus the things they can’t do.

Can Do MS hosts seven ski events from California to New Hampshire, inviting people to participate in a day of fun while also raising funds to help those living with MS. This year the teams will be joined by Olympic skier Jonny Moseley.

The Express Lift at the bottom of Gondola One in Vail Village will serve as the home base for registration on Saturday from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. During the day there will be amateur ski races at the Epic Mix racecourse near the Avanti Express lift. A Celebration Ski Down to honor Can Do MS Founder, Jimmy Heuga will be held at the bottom of the Epic Mix race arena at 3 p.m. and the group will return to the Express Lift bar at Mountain Plaza for the après ski awards party and raffle from 3 to 6 p.m. Enjoy live music by Jonny Mogambo, free beer thanks to Bonfire Brewing, appetizers, musical chairs and raffles.

There is no cause or cure for MS but Can Do MS provides hope and a pathway to take charge of the disease. To find out more please visit www.cando-ms.org.

A country music queen and music fit for a king

Country music singer Sara Evans will grace the Vilar Performing Arts Center with her beautiful voice and soulful lyrics on Friday at 7 p.m.

She’s had five No. 1 singles, sold millions of albums worldwide, won the Academy of Country Music’s Top Female Vocalist Award and claimed a Country Music Association trophy for her signature song, “Born To Fly.”

Evans grew up singing and was a part of her family’s band in has been in and out of Nashville recording songs and albums as a solo artist. You may remember hits such as “A Little Bit Stronger,” “I Could Not Ask For More,” “Born to Fly,” “Suds In The Bucket,” “No Place That Far,” “My Heart Can’t Tell You No” and more.

Enjoy a little storytelling at this intimate venue with this award-winning county music star. Tickets are $78 and you can find out more by visiting www.vilarpac.org.

Also performing at the Vilar Performing Arts Center this weekend is the King’s Singers on Sunday at 7 p.m. This British a cappella group has been around for over 50 years and it still features the same vocal formation of two countertenors, one tenor, two baritones and a bass singer.

The King’s Singers will perform “Royal Blood,” a program that investigates the life and legacy of 16th century King Henry VIII. From London’s Royal Albert Hall to the Opera House in Sydney or New York’s Carnegie Hall, take advantage of the King’s Singers sharing their vocal qualities in Beaver Creek.

Tickets start at $48 for adults and are $10 for students. Or, buy three tickets to this show and get the fourth ticket free. This show is also part of the VPAC ticket package: Pick three shows for $90, pick five shows for $175 or pick eight shows for $240. The show is also part of the Pay Your Age (18-30 years old) ticket program. Go to www.vilarpac.org for more details.

Après ski with Vail Jazz

We don’t hear a lot about Vail Jazz in the wintertime. For 26 years the sounds of jazz have dominated outdoor venues from the Vail Farmers Market to the Ford Amphitheater. But this Friday, Vail Jazz will host a special pop-up après ski party at the Minturn Saloon with the sounds of the Burnsville Band.

Head over to this iconic Minturn bar and restaurant and enjoy the free live music as well as free drinks and appetizers from 3 to 5 p.m.

“Every local knows that the Minturn Saloon is one of the valley’s most boisterous, under-the-radar venues for a celebratory drink after a day on the slopes. We want to ramp that up a notch,” said Vail Jazz executive director James Kenly in a press release. “It makes sense to add après ski to our wheelhouse with this pop-up event and also provide a glimpse of the musical energy to come this summer.”

The Burnsville Band is lead by Steve Burns, who has been playing the guitar since he was 11 and will be guiding the audience with some deep, soul searching blues music. The Burnsville Band has developed a regional following as well as a reputation for bringing a joyful buzz to any party.

Head to Minturn, which is a close drive from Vail or Beaver Creek ski areas, or leave work a little early this Friday to take part in this winter celebration with Vail Jazz. For more information, visit www.vailjazz.org.

Historical hike

In addition to the daily snowshoe hikes, evening snowshoe tours, full moon snowshoe tours and backcountry snowshoe hikes, Walking Mountains Science Center also hosts history trips on snowshoes.

Walking Mountains’ mission is “to awaken a sense of wonder and inspire environmental stewardship and sustainability through natural science education.” They take that one step further by adding historical tidbits of Eagle County’s legacy with the addition of the Hiking Through History tours.

Walking Mountains has teamed up with the Eagle County Historical Society for the snowshoe history treks. Saturday’s hike takes place in East Brush Creek outside of Eagle. Local historian Kathy Heicher will share stories about Ranger Brown, who tended the forest from 1920-1935.

Ranger Brown handled tasks including managing grazing allotments for local ranchers, building key trails and roads, building Forest Service cabins and offices throughout Eagle County. He also handled predator control issues involving wolves. Brown also managed the Civilian Conservation Corps camp established in 1940. Learn about this fascinating character who helped shape many of the trails and forest resources in our valley.

“Kathy Heicher and the Eagle County Historical Society always do an amazing job with us for Hiking Through History,” said Paul Abling, marketing and communications director for Walking Mountains. We’ve explored the history of many areas together including Camp Hale, Red Cliff, Fulford, and the Sweetwater Cave. We are excited to learn all about the history of another area, East Brush Creek, on this fun snowshoe history trek.”

The tour is set up to be a half-day excursion with the hike itself about 2.5 miles in distance. Snowshoes and poles are provided. Bring your own lunch for a post-tour picnic at Yeoman Park Campground. The program meets at Walking Mountains Science Center at 9 a.m. Register online in advance: www.walkingmountains.org.