Winter Park Resort plans big festivities for closing weekend
Activities abound at Winter Park Resort this weekend as the ski area prepares to close down for the 2017-2018 winter season. Guests to the mountain will enjoy live music, the annual pond skim, wacky costumes and hopefully a little bit of snow.
“In addition to what looks like some snow this weekend, which is always a lot of fun, we’ve got a full weekend of activities planned,” said Steve Hurlbert, director of communications for the resort. “The closing weekend at Winter Park is always a huge party, and this year is going to be no different.”
Festivities begin on Saturday with New Belgium Throwback Day. Visitors are encouraged to dress in their favorite 80s and 90s garbs throughout the weekend, and will be treated to a performance by 80s cover band Electric Avenue next to Derailer Bar from 3 to 5 p.m. There will also be a scavenger hunt, bounce castle and face painter in the Village, as well as free samples from New Belgium Brewery.
Sunday brings one of the resort’s marquee spring events, the 50th Annual Spring Splash pond skim, the longest running event of its kind in the state. Participants will ski or board through an obstacle course set up on Larry Sale Trail, then they must try and skim across a 30-yard pond dug by the resort’s slope maintenance team. Those who make it across can win cash prizes, and participants are encouraged to wear whatever costumes they feel fit the occasion.
While safety became a minor issue last year, with snowballs being hurled at participants, Hurlbert said that won’t be a concern this year.
“That was an issue last year, and this year we’re going to have signage up around the course and we’ll be looking for people throwing snowballs,” said Hurlbert. “We’ll ask them to stop, and if they don’t we’ll ask them to leave. This is a 50-year tradition, and we’ve never had this issue before. So we’re just asking that people be respectful.”
Registration for the Spring Splash is $20, and is being capped at 100 people.
The majority of Winter Park Resort will be close down on Sunday, though the Mary Jane Territory will remain open until May 6.
“It’s kind of a two pronged celebration this year because we’re celebrating a great ski season, but we’re also celebrating that there’s two more weeks of great spring skiing at the Jane,” said Hurlbert. “So it’s a great time, and a lot of fun to check out.”
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