Peek at the Vail Symposium’s winter lineup |

Peek at the Vail Symposium’s winter lineup

Daily staff report
Vail, CO Colorado
Special to the Daily

VAIL, Colorado – The Vail Symposium kicked off its 2010-winter season on Thursday with a showing of the documentary film “Afghan Star” at the Vilar Center.

Since 1971 the Vail Symposium has inspired debate and collaboration in the Vail Valley through its thought-provoking, diverse and innovative events each year. Locally, Symposium events bring in people from around the world to discuss an array of current topics from art to politics, in an effort to engage the community in discussion of new thoughts and ideas.

This winter’s schedule, focused on the theme of Rethink, continues that mission, from the documentary film series and the popular unlimited adventure series, to events focused on current political and social topics.

The winter 2010 film series showcases documentaries related to topics that will be presented this season. What makes the series unique is the participation of those involved with the film in some way, whether it be the film maker, film critic or those who have lived through what the documentary has portrayed-during-post-film discussions. Films will be shown monthly at the Vilar Performing Arts Center in Beaver Creek. Each film will tie in directly to the other programs happening during that month.

The next Symposium event takes place Monday at the Sonnenalp in Vail where Nancy Soderberg, a former United Nations Ambassador and Obama and Michael Bloomberg’s foreign policy advisor, will discuss this current administration’s foreign policy track record.

Several of the winter season events challenge participants to explore current political events and social trends and partake in discussion and debate to increase their understanding and awareness of these topics. These provacative programs will start with an event on Jan. 15 focused on Iran, a country about which little is known. Most headlines about Iran refer to terrorism, revolution and wrongful imprisonment, but what else is the country comprised of? The discussion will help attendees to better-understand the politics, philosophy and economy of this region, as well as explore the relationship between the West and Iran.-

Returning for a seventh season, the Unlimited Adventure Series brings some of the world’s most experienced mountain climbers, skiers and adventure seekers to the Vail Valley to share their stories with the community. Some of this winters participants include a former member of the U.S. Paralympic Ski Team, a woman who has rowed solo across the Atlantic Ocean, a treasure hunter, and a maverick adventure filmmaker. The first event takes place Jan. 31.

One winter highlight will be a Symposium summit – Energy + Environmment: Turning Goals into Reality, set for March 22 and 23. This-December, leaders from around the world gathered in Denmark to discuss globally recognized proposals and goals to limit the adverse effects of climate change. The Vail Symposium will take the findings of these leaders and put them into perspective. Organizational and governmental leaders will discuss global agreements on policies and how to turn these goals into reality.

The Rethink series continues with a program on peace on April 1. While it is not a new concept, peace is not necessarily easy to create. A current trend has put the spotlight on women. In 2000, the United Nations adopted Resolution 1325 that specifically addressed the impact of war on women, and women’s contributions to conflict resolution and sustainable peace. Dr. Karumba Ringera, the founder and executive director of International Peace Initiatives, and Former Colonol Ann Wright, a retired official of the U.S. State Department, will discuss how women are making a difference when it comes to creating peace.

The Symposium will also seek to ‘rethink’ race with the president’s of the National Council of La Raza and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People during a program on April 8. From ongoing changes to our civil rights to the continued debate on immigration, race influences many facets of our national policy. This discussion will illuminate current perspectives and trends in racial relations in the United States.

For more information, and greater details on events, locations and prices, visit

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