A cappella music, Yeti hockey with FDNY, ice bikes, snowshoe tours and a Christmas tree bonfire: Tricia’s Weekend Picks 1/7/22
After the slopes close there are several ways to entertain the family this weekend
Whiffenpoofs of Yale
Come and listen to the oldest a cappella group in America at the Vilar Performing Arts Center. The Whiffenpoofs of Yale return to the stage on Friday night at 7:30 p.m.
Way back in 1909, a few members of the Yale Glee Club were enjoying themselves at Mory’s Temple Bar and started harmonizing and doing a little improvisation to the popular tunes of the day. The fun caught on and they decided to form a group, and that group was named after a mythical dragonfish called Whiffenpoof.
Year after year, the ever-changing group of 14 talented seniors at Yale have carried on the tradition of mastering harmonies and dazzling audiences around the world. The baritones, basses and tenors perform live on stage, but you may have seen past groups on television shows such as NBC’s “The Sing Off” and “Saturday Night Live,” CBS’s “60 Minutes” and Fox Network’s “Glee.”
The Whiffenpoofs, or “Whiffs” for short, will be singing classic Yale tunes, jazz favorites like “When the Saints Go Marching In,” and chart-toppers spanning the decades.
Tickets are $38 for reserved seating and student tickets are $25. This show also qualifies for the “Pay Your Age” community arts access program. This winter, the VPAC is inviting 19–30-year-olds to ‘Pay Your Age’ on select performances. Purchase in person at the VPAC box office with valid proof of ID.
To learn more about this show, tickets and COVID-19 policies, go to vilarpac.org.
Yeti Hockey welcome FDNY
It’s another big weekend for hockey at the Dobson Ice Arena with the Vail Yeti Hockey team welcoming back FDNY – Fire Department New York’s amateur hockey team. The games will be Friday and Saturday night and the puck drops at 7:50 p.m. each night.
Vail Yeti Hockey has been around since 2013 and consists of former Division I NCAA college hockey, semi-pro and pro players who have moved on from that level of competition. In its short history, the Yeti have developed quite a following of local fans and those in town who simply want to check out the excitement of a hockey game.
“This will be the sixth match up against FDNY. I think we’ve all learned that these guys battle extremely hard on the ice and compete the entire 60 minutes,” said Brent Sands, a veteran on the Vail Yeti Hockey team.
Either stay in town after skiing and riding Vail Mountain and enjoy some après ski and live music and grab a bite to eat at a restaurant in Lionshead or come early and park in the Lionshead Parking Structure, which is free after 3 p.m. The Dobson Ice Arena is a short walk from the east end of the Lionshead parking structure and it is also on the free, in-town bus stop.
General admission tickets are $10 and kids 5 years old and under are free. Concessions are available at the venue and you can also show your Yeti pride by purchasing Yeti merchandise.
The Yeti hockey schedule spans well into springtime with teams from around Colorado, St. Louis, Chicago and Jackson Hole. For more information, go to vailyetihockey.com.
Ice biking at the Beaver Creek Rink
Beaver Creek has introduced a fun new way to enjoy the ice rink: ice bikes! Imagine a beach cruiser bike with a blade instead of a wheel in the front and a studded snow tire on the back. The whole bike is on a frame that is also on blades so it can slide, so tipping the bike over is not possible. You still pedal to propel yourself across the ice and to brake, just reverse your foot on the pedal, just like on a single speed bicycle. No skates necessary, just dress for wintry weather and give this new attraction a try. Those wanting to ride the ice bikes unaccompanied by an adult need to be 8 years of age or older.
Ice Bikes, which made their debut last year, are available daily for 30-minute time slots from 12 – 12:30 p.m. or 12:30 – 1 p.m. during the day and from 8 – 8:30 p.m. or 8:30 – 9 p.m. under the lights of the rink at night. These time slots are used exclusively for ice bikers before and after the rink is open to skaters. Once you’ve booked a time, you can check out your registered bikes at the Beaver Creek Ice Skate Rental, located next to Base Mountain Sports in the Beaver Creek Village. You’ll find skate rentals there, too. The cost is $25 per rental.
The Beaver Creek Ice Rink offers endless family-friendly fun. Those in your group who aren’t riding the bikes can take a seat on the plush couches and warm up by the fire pits and even grab a drink while watching the ice biking action. Beaver Creek now has a Common Consumption Area that allows adults 21 years of age and older to have alcoholic beverages purchased at the local restaurants and retailers. For more information about ice biking go to beavercreek.com and click on Winter Activities.
Walking Mountains free snowshoe tours
Take a break from the skis and snowboards and slow down a bit with snowshoes.
Walking Mountains is once again offering its free snowshoe tours this winter. Choose from guided walks going out of Walking Mountain’s campus in Avon or from the Nature Discovery Center at the top of the Eagle Bahn Gondola (No. 19) out of Lionshead Village.
The snow provides clues as to what the wildlife has been doing. Tracks can be seen for days, allowing your guide to point out certain critters and their behaviors based on their footprints (or, paw or hoof prints) in the snow. Which birds stay here instead of migrating south for the winter? What does a fox eat? Where do the moose live? What kind of tree is that? All those questions and more can be answered on the tours.
The tours themselves are free and snowshoes are provided, but keep in mind if you are doing a tour out of the Nature Discovery Center on Vail Mountain, you will need a valid ski pass or Vail Scenic Ride Ticket in order to ride the gondola get you up there. Go to walkingmountains.org to get singed up and to learn more.
- Monday – Saturday
- 2 to 3 p.m.
- Walking Mountains Campus, Avon
- All ages
Guided Snowshoe Tours – Vail Mountain
- Wednesday – Saturday
- 11 to 12 p.m. and 2 to 3 p.m. (a 5 to 6 p.m. tour will be added once the Eagle Bahn Gondola hours are extended when Adventure Ridge opens later in January)
- Nature Discover Center at Eagle’s Nest
- Ages 10 years old and up
Christmas Tree Bonfire
Come and gather around the fire for a hometown post-holiday tradition, the Christmas Tree Fire in Minturn this Friday from 6 to 7:30 p.m.
If you are ready to part with your tree, the Town of Minturn is asking that you remove all of the bells, whistles and baubles from the branches and have the tree at the end of your driveway for curbside pickup by Minturn Public Works. If you don’t have your tree ready to go by noon on Friday, you can transport your undecorated tree directly to the site of the bonfire, which is at the Little Beach Amphitheater.
The Bonfire will take place on Friday, January 7th from 6 to 7:30 p.m. and will include hot cocoa and s’mores roasting. There will be two fires, one than contains all the Christmas trees that is more of a big bonfire, and then a smaller fire for roasting s’mores.
Come early and do some shopping in this quaint little old rail road town that was established in the late 1800s. Find some treasures at Holy Toledo, a consignment shop, check out the rugs, unique home décor and fashion accessories at The Scarab and find some deals at the big sale happening at The Uptown Store.
Stay late and go to dinner at some of the fun, casual eateries in Minturn. Enjoy the small town with big charm where these restaurants are pretty much within walking distance of each other:
- BC Backcountry Wings at the Cowboy Bar
- Kirby Cosmo’s BBQ Bar
- Magusto’s Pizza & Burger Pub
- Minturn Country Club
- Minturn Saloon
- Rocky Mountain Taco
- Thai Kitchen
- The Mexican Grill (where the Turntable Restaurant used to be)
For more information about Minturn and its winter events, go to minturn.org.