Buzz Schleper hosts 40th anniversary party at Shakedown Bar in Vail, gives away $8k in gear |

Buzz Schleper hosts 40th anniversary party at Shakedown Bar in Vail, gives away $8k in gear

Buzz Schleper displays his 40th-anniversary poster, designed by local artist Nico Sayag, at his shop's 40th anniversary party on Saturday. The event was held at Shakedown Bar in Vail Village.
John LaConte/Vail Daily

Ethan St. Germain has worked at Buzz’s Boards for 25 of the 40 years the Vail ski and snowboard shop has been in business.

Along the way, he has formed great relationships with his snowboard suppliers, and he contacted all of them in anticipation of a massive bash being planned by owner Buzz Schleper.

“Everybody was happy to contribute,” St. Germain said on Saturday. “People wanted to help us celebrate.”

And celebrate they did.

Schleper reached out to Scott Rednor with Shakedown Bar to provide the venue, Rednor obliged and joined Schleper’s son Johnny Schleper on stage along with Bob Masters and Mark Levy for a night of rock ‘n’ roll, along with nonstop giveaways.

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Buzz had also reached out to all of his ski suppliers, and along with St. Germain’s suppliers from the snowboard side of the business, they gave away about $8,000 in skis, snowboards, bindings, backpacks and all other manner of ski-related equipment. Jones, Vans, K2, Rossignol, Burton, Volcom, Candy Grind, Line, Black Crows, Airblaster, Union, ThirtyTwo, Blizzard, Technica, Quicksilver, Lib Tech, Never Summer, Nordica, Outdoor Tech and more contributed.

Buzz and Lynne Schleper give away a pair of skis at the 40th-anniversary party for Buzz’s Boards in Vail on Saturday.
John LaConte/Vail Daily

All told, the giveaways totaled about $8,000, Buzz said. Raffle tickets were free, handed out at the door, and there was no charge to get in.

“I’m not going to charge people to come to my party,” Schleper insisted. He also supplied a lot of the drinks, running up a $500 bar tab.

At the end of the night, Buzz — after giving away items all evening on stage with his wife, Lynne — heard that some people had not yet received anything. He produced a container of T-shirts that had been cached away specifically in case of such an occurrence, insisting those unlucky partygoers leave with a T-shirt emblazoned with a Buzz’s Boards 40th-anniversary logo designed by his son Hunter Schleper.

Local artist Niko Sayag designed a poster specifically for the event, which will be displayed in perpetuity at the Gore Creek Drive business.

Buzz described the evening as a perfect celebration of 40 years in business.

“I can’t believe it’s been 40 years already,” he said. “But time flies when you’re skiing every day.”

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