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Author Mitch Albom to speak

Daily Staff Report

VAIL – The Vail Symposium and the Vail Valley Medical Center Foundation announce that Mitch Albom, New York Times best-selling author of “Tuesdays With Morrie” and “The Five People You Meet In Heaven,” will speak in Vail from 7-9 p.m. Feb. 1 at the Vail Marriott Mountain Resort and Spa in Lionshead. Presented by the Vail Daily, 100 percent of the event’s proceeds will benefit the Women’s Cancer Coalition of the Vail Valley Medical Center.In addition to authoring eight books, Albom is a nationally syndicated newspaper columnist for the Detroit Free Press, nationally syndicated radio host for ABC and a weekly panelist on ESPN’s Sports Reporters. A Philadelphia native, Albom graduated from Brandeis University and earned his master’s degrees in journalism and business administration from Columbia University in New York City. His background also includes stints as an amateur boxer, nightclub singer and pianist.For 12 years, Albom has been named the top sports columnist in the nation by Associated Press Sports Editors, the highest honor in his field. He has also received five first-place APSE honors for feature writing. No other columnist has won the APSE award more than once. During his storied career, Mitch has received more than 100 writing awards from AP, UPI, Headliners Club, National Sportswriters and Broadcasters Associations, and others. Albom founded two charities in the metropolitan Detroit area. “The Dream Fund,” which was founded in 1989, allows disadvantaged children to become involved with the arts. “A Time To Help,” founded in 1998, brings volunteers together once a month to tackle various projects in Detroit.The Women’s Cancer Coalition is a group of dedicated individuals specifically committed to fund raising through special events and programs, benefiting cancer awareness in the Colorado mountain communities of Eagle, Summit and Lake Counties. All proceeds from the WCC-sponsored events and programs are directed toward medical initiatives to target the early detection, education and prevention of cancer through various programs and resources at the Shaw Regional Cancer Center and Vail Valley Medical Center.A nonprofit, grass-roots organization, the Vail Symposium was created in 1971 as an educational, literary and cultural organization for the purpose of presenting programs that are stimulating, diverse and affordable for the Vail Valley.Vail Valley independent bookstores Verbatim Booksellers and The Bookworm of Edwards are donating 100 percent of their proceeds from books sold at the evening’s event. Verbatim Booksellers has been in Vail since 1983, and The Bookworm of Edwards opened in 1996.Advance reservations are required due to limited seating and can be made by calling Lisa Pease at 569-7479, the Vail Symposium at 476-0954, or by visiting Verbatim Booksellers in Vail Village or The Bookworm of Edwards. Tickets are $20 per person, and 100 percent of the ticket cost will benefit the Women’s Cancer Coalition of the Vail Valley Medical Center. For more information, contact Deb Luginbuhl of the Vail Symposium at 476-0954 or Lisa Pease of the Vail Valley Medical Center Foundation at 569-7479.Chorale looking for good little singers for springThe Eagle Valley Children’s Chorale is currently accepting enrollment for its spring session. No audition or pre-registration is necessary for new members currently in second through eighth grades who enjoy singing and performing. Practices are from 3:30-4:30 p.m. for second- and third-graders (and first-graders who attended the fall session) and 4:15 to 5:15 p.m. for fourth- an fifth-graders (fourth- and fifth-graders meet only on Tuesdays at Edwards Elementary)Practices are on Tuesdays and Wednesdays in the music room at Edwards Elementary school, and Fridays in the music room at Eagle Valley Elementary School.For more information, call director Liane Gulizia at 926-2228 or Marka Moser at 926-0577.Beaver Creek Culinary Classic starts ThursdayBEAVER CREEK – Top culinary and pastry chefs from across the country will join local chefs for a weekend of skiing, cooking and wine tasting at the seventh annual Beaver Creek Culinary Classic and Celebrity Chef Ski Race Thursday through Sunday. The classic is open to the public and is presented by Bon Appetit magazine and Beaver Creek Resort.”We are proud to team up with Bon Appetit magazine to host the winter Culinary Classic and welcome such a distinguished group of visiting and host celebrity chefs to the resort in 2005,” said Tony O’Rourke, executive director of the Beaver Creek Resort Company. “Beaver Creek has earned its reputation as one of America’s premiere dining destinations. It is only fitting that we pair our top flight chefs with the best culinary talent from across the nation.”The festivities begin Thursday with the third annual Celebrity Chef Ski Race. Four-member teams will lead local and visiting chefs in a dual giant slalom race, followed by a luncheon. That same day, Splendido at The Chateau will host a five-course dinner. Friday evening, the second annual World Cup Challenge at The Vilar Center will feature a free “Iron Chef-like” competition. Chefs will trade their ski poles for toques for that Saturday night’s Grand Tasting, a walk-around wine, food and pastry tasting at the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort and Spa. A portion of proceeds will be donated to the nonprofit Resource Center. SaddleRidge will host a brunch Sunday.Visiting chefs include Ken Frank, La Toque, Napa, Calif.; Giada De Laurentiis, chef of Food Network’s “Everyday Italian”; Mark Militello, Mark’s Las Olas, Ft. Lauderdale, FL; Jean-Claude Canestrier, Paris Hotel, Las Vegas; Patrice Caillot, Ethel M Chocolates, Las Vegas; Duff Goldman, Charm City Cakes, Baltimore; Richard Chamberlain, Chamberlain’s Steakhouse, Dallas, TX; Rafih Benjelloun, Imperial Fez, Atlanta, GA; Paul Albrecht, SPICE Restaurant, Atlanta, GA; Kurt Gutenbruner, Wallse, New York, NY; Jimmy Bradley, The Harrison, New York, NY.For general information on the Beaver Creek Culinary Classic and Celebrity Chef Ski Race, call (888) 323-7612. For tickets and packages, call (888) 920-2787. For lodging reservations, call (866) 714-0611 or visit http://www.beavercreek.com.Bravo! ticket packages now on saleVAIL – A variety of ticket packages are now on sale for the 18th season of Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival. Seats are available on a first come first serve basis. Because individual tickets will not go on sale until Feb. 22, ticket package purchasers receive priority seating when purchasing by Feb. 21. Many ticket packages also have discounts associated with them. The Orchestra Subscription Series is available again for 2005. When you purchase this series you receive regular reserved or premium reserved tickets to every Bravo orchestra performance (16 total, not including patriotic concerts) and receive 10 percent off the total price.The Season Sampler is a new package available for 2005. This package includes a ticket to two concerts of your choice to each orchestra (6 concerts total) and is available in the regular reserved category for $294 and premium reserved category for $374.Complete Classics is another new package for 2005. When you purchase regular reserved or premium reserved tickets to every classical Bravo performance (11 total), you receive 10 percent off. The Chamber Music Classics Series at the Vilar Center is back by popular demand for $108. Purchase tickets to four of the Chamber Music Classics concerts and get tickets to the fifth concert free.In appreciation of the local community for its loyal support, the festival will offer two pass programs again this summer. Club Bravo! is back for $115 Early Bird ($149 after June 6). Pass holders receive lawn seating to every Bravo! concert at the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater, a free ticket to the July 12 Chamber Classics concert and exclusive free and discounted upgrade specials via e-mail. Club Bravo! is valued at over $400. Club Bravo! passes are non-transferable. The Club Bravo! Gold Card is back at $399. Ideal for companies, this pass is transferable and includes lawn seating to every Bravo! concert at the the amphitheater, seats at all chamber concerts (excluding soirees) and has a ticket value almost $600.The season opens once again with Maestro Christopher Seaman leading the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, and Russian pianist Olga Kern performing Rachmaninoff’s Second Piano Concerto. Also performing with the orchestra will be violinist Chee Yun, and violist Nokuthula Ngwenyama. When Maestro Andrew Litton and the Dallas Symphony Orchestra are in residence in mid-July, the festival presents them in a concert performance of Bizet’s beloved opera, “Carmen,” with international vocal soloists and the Dallas Symphony Chorus. Pianists Jon Kimura Parker and Andrew Litton will also be soloists with the orchestra. Maestro Lorin Maazel will return to Vail with the New York Philharmonic, featuring artists such as Chinese pianist Lang Lang, cellist Lynn Harrell and violinist James Ehnes. The summer also includes a multitude of chamber music concerts, which will take place in a variety of venues, including the Vilar Center for the Arts, private homes in the Vail Valley and the Vail Interfaith Chapel. The festival will also present an exciting chamber music premier by our Pulitzer-Prize winning American Composer-in-Residence, Melinda Wagner. For additional program details and to purchase ticket packages, visit http://www.vailmusicfestival.org or call 877-812-5700.Vail Valley Medical Center hosts its third Neiman-Marcus Fashion Show and Luncheon to benefit cancer patientsVAIL – The Vail Valley Medical Center Volunteer Corps will host its third Neiman-Marcus Fashion Show and Luncheon April 6 at the Vail Marriott Mountain Resort and Spa. The event will also include a champagne preview and shopping opportunity for ticket holders of $150 or more the evening of April 5. A donation of $75 will be accepted at the preview event for those unable to attend the luncheon.The doors will open at 9 a.m. April 6 for shopping the Neiman-Marcus Boutique and the silent auction for not only the luncheon guests but also anyone who is interested in seeing the spring and summer Neiman-Marcus selected line. Taylor Kundolf will entertain on the piano during the cocktail hour.The net proceeds will benefit the Shaw Regional Cancer Center in Edwards and the purchase of capital equipment to perform High Dose Rate (HDR) Brachytherapy. HDR Brachytherapy will offer dose tailored amounts of radiation that decrease the damage to normal tissue and increases the dose of radiation to the tumor itself. HDR Brachytherapy is a sophisticated program used in approximately one-third of cancer centers in the United States to treat a variety of cancers, including breast cancer and gynecological cancers. The Shaw Regional Cancer Center serves residents throughout an eight-county region including Eagle, Summit, Routt, Pitkin, Lake, Grand, Garfield and Moffat counties.The Volunteer Corps still has openings for companies and individuals. Three levels of sponsorships are available, each entitling the donors to preferred seating and admission to the champagne preview: Haute Couture at $500 per seat or $5,000 for a table of 10, Couture at $300 per seat or $3,000 per table, and Pret-A-Porter at $150 per seat or $1,500 per table. In-kind sponsors will receive a 50 percent credit toward a sponsorship table for each in-kind donation. Tickets for regular luncheon seating will be $75. Patrons and sponsors, those who purchase tickets for $150 or more, can make reservations and purchase their tickets early by calling 569-7465 starting Jan. 15. Invitations will be mailed in February. For more information, call 569-7465.15th annual Taste of Vail slated for April 6-9VAIL – Wine and food lovers can now mark their calendars for the 15th annual Taste of Vail April 6-9. “The Chef’s Alpine Classic Ski Race will kick off the 2005 Taste of Vail, featuring chefs from the Vail Valley racing down Vail Mountain in their chef coat and chef toques,” said Susan Fritz, president of the Taste of Vail. “The Taste of Vail mountaintop gourmet picnic at 11,000 feet will once again be the signature event – a venue unmatched by any other festival in the U.S. What also sets the Taste of Vail apart is the more than 50 world-class wineries that come on by an invitation-only basis, and we insist that the winery owners or winemakers be here to personally pour their wines.” Thirty-five restaurants, 56 wineries from all over the world and more than 4,000 attendees and volunteers were involved in the Taste of Vail this past year.Taste of Vail also raises funds for valley charities. Since it began in 1990, the Taste of Vail has donated more than $240,000 to charitable programs in the valley.For more information or to purchase tickets, go to http://www.tasteofvail.com, or call 1-888-311-5665 or 970-926-5665.End-of-season party features Wyclef Jean, Mix Master Mike and the World Pond Skimming championshipsVAIL – Spring Back to Vail returns April 4-17, 2005, with two full weeks of headliner concerts, parties, competitions and events for the whole family. The festival expands this year with a total of eight different concerts featuring the tunes of Wyclef Jean and Mix Master Mike of the Beastie Boys, the addition of the new Warren Miller Experience and the biggest pond skimming contest in the world. “Last year over 10,000 people attended the Blues Traveler concert at Spring Back to Vail,” said James Deighan of Highline Sports and Entertainment, producers of the event. “With the support of Vail Resorts, we’re building on the success of last year’s event to make Spring Back to Vail the biggest and best party of the ski season.”This year’s concert lineup features an eclectic and energetic mix for all ages with eight concerts planned both on-mountain and in Vail and Lionshead villages. Mix Master Mike, longtime DJ for the Beastie Boys will perform Saturday, April 9. Wyclef Jean, successful solo artist and former member of the superstar hip-hop trio the Fugees plays the following weekend with a show on Friday, April 15. A series of mid-week concerts and other major headline shows will be announced in the month leading up to the event.Pond skimming contests are an annual rite of spring in the mountains, but only Vail can boast the world championships, organizers said. Saturday, April 16, hundreds of athletes will speed down a specially designed course on skis, snowboards and other snow-riding devices, hit the jump and attempt to slide completely across a 100-foot pool of freezing, churning water. A celebrity judging panel will take into account distance, style, creativity and overall impression to determine the world champion pond skimmer. “Though the ski season has just started, athletes from across the country have already begun their rigorous training to dethrone last year’s pond skimming champion, Corey Miller of the Vail Ski Patrol,” Deighan said. A new addition to Spring Back to Vail, the Warren Miller Experience will bring the ski industry’s most famous movie makers to Vail. The Warren Miller crew and their cast of world-class athletes will host a crazy relay race, an on-snow quarter pipe and/or rail jam exhibition, a Jeep driving course and a retro ski fashion show. Spring Back to Vail participants will also have a chance for their five minutes of fame as crews will be on hand filming throughout the entire festival.For more information, log on to http://www.springbacktovail.com or call Highline Sports and Entertainment at 970-476-6797.Vail, Colorado


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