Vail events coming on strong this summer |

Vail events coming on strong this summer

Scott N. MillerVail, CO, Colorado
Vail Daily file photo=Michael Gundzik (right) and Francie Gundzik show their patriotic spirit at ta past July 4th Parade in Vail, Colorado

VAIL, Colorado -With fewer tourists on the roads and in the air this summer, finding a good lure to bring people to Vail, Colorado is tough. That’s why events of nearly every kind are coming to Vail, Colorado this summer.From lacrosse tournaments to concerts to antique shows, virtually every weekend this summer is dedicated to some kind of event designed to bring people to Vail. Once the people are in town, still more events and activities are available to entice people to stay, and spend.Tuesday morning’s meeting of the Vail Chamber & Business Association was dedicated in large part to talking about events and promotions. The Vail Chamber is the lead group working on three events – the annual BBQ Bonanza in Vail Village June 27 and 27, a weekend of sweet treats in August and this weekend’s South of the Border Fiesta in Lionshead. There are many weekends this summer when there are events in both Lionshead and Vail Village. But is that too much?”We think events in Vail Village and Lionshead can help each other,” said Sarah Franke, marketing director for the Blue Moose and Vail Chophouse restaurants. That idea may be tested the weekend of June 27, when Vail Village hosts the BBQ Bonanza and the Vail Arts Festival is in Lionshead.Businesses in Vail Village are edgy because of Vail Resorts’ decision this spring that it wouldn’t run the VistaBahn Express chairlift out of Vail Village. The EagleBahn Gondola will run seven days a week this summer starting in July.While fewer than 150 people a day rode the VistaBahn last summer, the chamber, the town and Vail Resorts are working to put some spark into the Mountain Plaza area. Subject to funding approval, there may be a trampoline bungee jump and climbing wall in the area. Plans also include street entertainment – from jugglers to musicians – a couple of days a week in the Mountain Plaza area.Lionshead, meanwhile, is celebrating its second summer of events after the completion of the Arrabelle at Vail Square project. The Vail America Days parade on the 4th of July ends in Lionshead again, and that part of Vail will have Friday afternoon events from July 3 until almost the end of September. In August, the Vail Jazz Foundation is bringing several Thursday-night shows to Lionshead.At the end of August, the Vail Valley Medical Center chapter of Think First, a national group dedicated to getting kids and adults to wear bike helmets, will sponsor a cruiser bike ride around town.Beyond the bigger events, the town of Vail is still working on rules that allow businesses to hold special events of their own, from grand openings to charity events. Those special permits allow businesses a bit more leeway under the town’s outdoor sign rules.Sybil Navas, the town’s special events coordinator, said only a few such permits were issued last year. Seven have been issued already for this summer, she said. “The bottom line is that if somebody says they’re bored, take ’em out back and smack ’em around,” Vail chamber director Rich tenBraak said. “There’s plenty going on.” Business Editor Scott N. Miller can be reached at 970-748-2930 or


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