The annual Beer Festival will see some changes this year. “It’s not just a beer fest anymore,” Resort Director of Business Services Don Sharpe said. Enter Suds and Scotch, a new version of the festival that will include some fine scotch from various suppliers. The event takes place July 8 at Raven Lodge. Admission will still be $25; festival goers can then purchase tickets to redeem for samples from the different vendors. The barbecue and live music will still take place. “It’s something fun and different,” Sharpe said. “We believe you have to add new elements to events to make them more exciting.”
The Alpine Food Festival is also undergoing a facelift, and will be combined with the popular Wine Festival to create a two-night event Friday, Aug. 26 and Saturday, Aug. 27. The Wine and Food Festival will see the traditional wine festival run on Friday, with a gala dinner Saturday combining the best of both worlds with a chef and a sommelier.
As far as sporting events go, Resort staff are excited that the Bearclaw Invitational slopestyle mountain bike race is back. “It’s probably the single biggest event held on the mountain, summer or winter,” Resort Director of Public Relations Brent Curtain said. “On a good weather day we can count on 5,000 people coming up to watch.”
Darren Berrecloth staged the first Bearclaw in 2006, and more than 1,000 people came to watch. The crowds continued to grow, even with some bad weather in 2008.
The Bearclaw took a break for a few years, but the hype is growing. The event kicks off Aug. 4 with practice and the Lucky downhill and wraps up with the big event Aug. 6 from noon to 4 p.m., with a big air competition afterwards.
The mountain bike community will also be stoked at a few more events, including the BC Cup Provincials Aug. 13-14. Last year this event drew 250 downhill and 75 cross-country riders – the best in B.C. They’ll compete on the Monster Mile, a course that’s guaranteed to be gnarly, technical and steep.
See Jane Jump, a women’s mountain bike festival, is scheduled for Aug. 20-21, wrapping up three premier weekends of mountain biking.
The Resort will be open daily until Labour Day, when the chairlift will operate on weekends only until the third week in September.