Sunshine and spirits at TheBigWonderful festival |

Sunshine and spirits at TheBigWonderful festival

Attendees enjoyed a beerfest, craft bazaar and bluegrass music at the base of Winter Park Resort

(Left to right): Maxwell Hawk and Shona Paterson, co-founders of Mad Lemon. The Denver-based company handcrafts lemonade cocktails, which they offered at Winter Park Resort’s TheBigWonderful. The festival on April 1 represented companies around Colorado.
Meg Soyars/Sky-Hi News

End-of-the season skiing is always a celebration of sun and high spirits. Winter Park Resort exemplifies this at their annual Spring Bash + Splash. On April 1, the festival kicked off with the TheBigWonderful. Spring skiers, shoppers, craft beer enthusiasts and bluegrass fans had lots to enjoy on the bluebird day.

During TheBigWonderful’s beer festival, nearly 20 Colorado breweries, cideries and distilleries offered samples. Vendors offered unique drinks – from spiked lemonade, to hard kombucha, to botanical infused cocktails. Hopheads could sample good old-fashioned IPAs at Park Platt Brewing, or those looking to warm their bones could down a whiskey shot at Golden Moon Distillery.

Several Grand County breweries were there to represent. Fraser River Beer CO, Winter Park’s The Noble Buck and Fraser’s Vicious Cycle Brewing all offered tastings.  

Dogs joined in the fun at TheBigWonderful at Winter Park Resort.
Meg Soyars/Sky-Hi News

Many attendees decked themselves out in bright gaper day outfits, animal costumes or psychedelic shirts. If someone came to the party without an outfit, never fear – they could snag one from one of the many clothing vendors. Not Fade Away offered tie-dye band shirts, and B Fresh’s colorful booth sold everything from 80s-inspired ski jackets to graphic fanny packs.

Attendees ready to hit the slopes could stop by Hoohah’s booth to buy a flamboyant floral snowsuit. Loom Colorado offered handmade alpaca wool ponchos that made a fashion statement while also keeping the wearer cozy-warm.

Food vendors included Yummy Lotus, which offered homemade jams that ranged from mouth-burning strawberry ghost pepper, to mouth-watering apple pie jam. Attendees looking for something savory could try samples from Fireborn Chili Company or BT BBQ.

Vendors also offered unique, locally-made goods. The health and wellness company Kyoto Botanicals offered CBD infused gummies and tinctures. Guided by Gaia Creations sold high-vibration jewelry and vibrant gemstones.

Families enjoy dancing to the tunes of the Martin Gilmore Band.
Meg Soyars/Sky-Hi News

Even those who weren’t there to shop or drink could enjoy the free live music. The bluegrass bands drew in families to dance and soak up the sunshine. The Martin Gilmore Band played at the Village stage; the Fretliners and Head for the Hills jammed out at the main stage right at the resort base. Skiers and snowboarders lingered after the slopes closed to soak in the music.  

Missed TheBigWonderful? Don’t worry, there are more ways to celebrate the end of the season. Winter Park has several more events lined up for the Spring Bash + Splash. Every weekend in April, the resort will hold a different festivity.

On April 8, the resort will host Great-Full Days for a day of gratitude. Great-Full Days will host a Bucket Banked Slalom and more, raising funds for the Grand Foundations H.O.P.E. Fund. On April 15, attendees can represent the retro 90s during the High Fives Foundation Shred-A-Thon. Freeskiers will compete at the Full Send + Red Bull Cascade on April 22.

The season finale will be the Spring Splash on April 23, where competitors will get soaked at the pond skim.

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