By Harley Nefe
The Village of Sugar Mountain will be presenting the annual SugarFest celebration at Sugar Mountain Ski Resort, which involves a schedule packed with winter fun events all weekend long throughout December 10-12.
To kick off festivities every morning, the Preseason Ski Clinic will take place Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 8:30 a.m. This three-day program is for skiers, ages 12 and older, who are at an intermediate level and really want to improve their abilities.
“You’re immersed in learning and practicing more skills to become a better technical skier,” explained Kim Jochl, who is the Vice President of Sugar Mountain Resort.
Folks who are interested in participating in the Preseason Ski Clinic are not required to attend every day, and they can sign up the morning of or pre register in advance.
Following the Preseason Ski Clinic is the popular demo time between 9 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, where skiers and snowboarders can try out the newest and coolest equipment from just about every manufacturer displayed in store showrooms.
“We have a bunch of manufacturers like K2, Atomic, Rossignol, LINE, Burton and more that will have new equipment out to demo,” Jochl said.
To sign up to demo equipment, people should visit Ski Country Sports in the base lodge. There is no additional charge for this opportunity to go down the aisle and try out different products.
“Go right down the row to try a ski, take a run, return the ski, and try another one or even a snowboard,” Jochl described. “You can try different manufacturers or models; You can try three or four Burton boards, RIDE boards or Head skis.”
On Saturday at 10 a.m., there will be the official opening of Sugar’s new Big Birch quad chairlift that will be celebrated with the ribbon cutting ceremony.
“Most people already know we built this new quad lift this past summer that replaced the triple chair Big Birch lift, and it’s been running since we opened for the season, but the ribbon cutting will be lots of fun,” Jochl said.
Also on Saturday is the after ski party, which involves a live musical performance from the Glen Harlow & North Folk from 3-5 p.m. before fireworks are set off at 5:45 p.m.
After working up an appetite, people on the slopes can take advantage of the delicious SugarFeast that is always a part of the annual celebration.
“Food service will bake up and cook up some fun food and drinks,” Jochl said.
A hot chocolate and whipped cream bar will be in operation Saturday and Sunday. Soup Safari begins at 11 a.m. on Saturday, and the always-popular BBQ and sweet tea meals are available on Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. until 7 p.m.
On Sunday is the first Girls Go Shred Ride Day of the season, which is presented by EDGE of the WORLD. This event starts at 9 a.m. and goes until 4:30 p.m. Interested participants can meet up at the Girls Go Shred tent at the bottom of the slopes.
“From beginners to experienced riders, all are encouraged to come out and snowboard with the crew,” Jochl said. “Make some turns with new friends, and learn new tips and tricks.”
Throughout the weekend, there will also be fantastic lodging specials with up to 30% off discounts at participating lodging agencies.
“For non skiers, it is an excuse to come out and hang out at the lodge and see how skiing and snowboarding works, but we will still have ice skating and tubing open every day from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.,” Jochl said.
Sugar Mountain Resort couldn’t do SugarFest without their sponsors and supporters.
“The Village of Sugar Mountain has been the host sponsor supporting the event since its inception,” Jochl said. “Sugar Mountain TDA is a great supporter of SugerFest as well as Ski Country Sports, who helps us promote and manage the demo. We also have a new sponsor for SugarFest: Appalachian Mountain Brewery, which is mainly sponsoring the Preseason Ski Clinic.
For more information on SugarFest and a schedule of all events, visit the Sugar Mountain Resort website.
Photos are from previous years of SugarFest.