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Events for 20th Anniversary of Banff in Boone on Tap Across High Country


By Jesse Wood

Rich Campbell, organizer of the Boone stop on the Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour, recently announced some big news for the 20th anniversary event scheduled for the following weekend.

World-class rock climber Alex Honnold is coming to Boone – along with veteran mountaineer and author David Roberts. Honnold is a known in the climbing industry and beyond for his ability to calmly climb terribly difficult ascents, some of which are nearly a half-mile in the air, without a rope.

“It should be a lot of fun,” Campbell said.

Roberts and Honnold will be in town to talk about adventure, climbing and writing as well as signing and promoting, On the Wall, a book about Honnold’s rock climbing exploits.

Here is their schedule in Boone:

  • Friday, March 18 at Footsloggers: 2 to 3 p.m. – An informal talk about adventure and climbing.
  • Friday, March 18 at Footsloggers: 4 to 5 p.m. – Alone on the Wall book signing.
  • Saturday, March 19 at Schaefer Center: 2 to 3 p.m. – Writing About Adventure – For a Living.
  • Saturday, March 19 at Schaefer Center: 5:30 to 7 p.m. – Alone on the Wall book signing.
The jacket of Honnold’s new book, On the Wall, which was co-authored with David Roberts, a veteran mountaineer and adventure writer.

While the two-day screening at the Schaefer Center on the campus of Appalachian State University is sold out, there are still plenty of Banff-in-Boone-related activities for the public to enjoy in the coming days – as the above talk and signing at Footsloggers denotes.

Since its inception 20 years ago, the Boone stop on the world tour, one of the most popular stops in North America, has evolved into a community festival that educates and entertains the public – all while raising funds to send students in the ASU Outdoor Programs on their own adventures.

Below are some other 20th anniversary events open to the public. Organizers also put on a screening for grade-school children, and in years past, special guests related to Banff have visited schools in Watauga County.

Her’s a look at the sponsors of Banff in Boone:
Appalachian State University | Appalachian State University Recreation | Footsloggers | Appalachian State University Recreation Management Program | Center 45 | High Gravity Adventures | Lost Province Brewing Co | Rock Dimensions Inc. | Appalachian Geology | VPC Builders | Bistro Roca | Appalachian Ski Mountain | Gideon Ridge Inn | Peabody’s Wine & Beer | Cobo Sushi Bistro and Bar | Regear Outdoors Co. | The Inn at Crestwood Restaurant and Spa | cricket trailer | Blue Ridge Energy Works, LLC

Banff Film Festival Banner Display: Special 20th Anniversary Banff banners are on display in Downtown Boone up from March 1-25. Sponsors include the Town of BooneASU Cultural AffairsASU Office of Sustainability, and ASU Outdoor Programs. Lynn Willis designed the banner, which came in first place in a banner design specifically for the 20th anniversary of Banff in Boone.

The Schaefer Center will display a Banff 20 Year Poster Retrospective in the Smith Gallery from March 16-19. The Retrospective will be available to view during Schaefer Center hours and at the Banff Film Festival.

The AMPC will be announcing the winners for the 13th Annual Appalachian Mountain Photography Competition on Saturday, March 19 at the Banff Film Festival.  The AMPC exhibition will be on display at the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts from March 4 – June 4. There will also be a public reception to celebrate the AMPC during the First Friday Art Crawl on Friday, March 4, at the Turchin Center in Boone.

High Gravity Adventures will be offering a discount on High Gravity tickets to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Banff festival in Boone. Present your Banff ticket or ticket stub at High Gravity to receive a 20 percent discount off a single ticket. They will also be collaborating with Cricket Trailers to run a High Gravity Adventure Basecamp that will be located outside the Schaefer Center March 18 and 19 from 5 p.m. until the end of the show. The High Gravity Adventure Basecamp will be the central focus of all our “outdoor vendors” this year in the parking spaces near the doors of the Schaefer Center. Other outdoor vendors include representatives from NC State Parks, the Mountain Alliance, and more!

Lost Province is hosting a Banff Film Festival celebration on Friday, March 18 from 4 – 6 p.m.  Lost Province will be releasing their Mountain Top Porter and Compass Rose Ale in celebration of the Banff Film Festival.  Along with these two beer releases, the event will feature discounted appetizers and discounted beer prices.  Come on over to Lost Province to kick off the Banff 20th Anniversary weekend in style.

Rock Dimensions will be offering a $5 discount off a staff belay (a $20 value now for just $14.95) for those interested in climbing the tower at Footsloggers during the Banff Film Festival weekend.

Center 45 will be offering $10 day passes to any climber that shows their Banff ticket at the gym from Tuesday, March 15 – Sunday, March 20. Along with this special, Center 45 is hosting the SOCO XVIII bouldering competition on Saturday, March 19. To register for the competition, visit this link.