Having had the pleasure of attending the Vermont Open last year, I can speak from experience that it is more than just a snowboard event, it's a weekend long celebration of the sport and a music festival on top of that. There is so much to take in including the snowboarding contests, concerts and fundraising benefits. Rest is not an option but, who needs that when you will be having such an amazing time?! There's even a pig roast outside the main base lodge on Saturday. What's better than eating succulent pig that was slow cooked on a spit while watching snurfer challenge? Ummm, nothing. Simply stated, the Vt. Open is epic and you should plan on being there beginning this Thursday, March 9 and staying through the weekend.
The Vermont Open Filled With Events
The Vt. Open itself is open to riders of all ages and snowboarders come from all over the state and beyond to compete for the top prize of over $20,000! The events include, the rail jam, slopestyle, retro pipe and banked slalom and the competition will not disappoint. In true philanthropic style, partial proceeds from the Vermont Open will go to the Ross Powers Level Field Fund and includes a poker tournament on Friday night and meet and greet benefit with Powers himself helping boost contributions for his cause. The days may be filled with some amazing snowboarding but the party starts right around après ski and continues far into the night. For a full list of the competition events and times as well as where to party, visit the Stratton website. However, here are three places that you need to hit up throughout the weekend to guarantee yourself a great time.
The Green Door Pub:
The festivities begin on Thursday with the Vt. Open Kick Off Party at The Green Door Pub. There you can send it into the weekend with DJ Nook n Kranny n' Frends spinning some sick beats. Don't make that your only visit to GDP this weekend though. Stop back in on Friday for the Hayes Bros. Party with Stratton regular, DJ Joe Bell and then again on Saturday night for one of my personal favorite après ski bands, Vermont's own, Saints and Liars. The Green Door will also be the site of the aforementioned snowboard swap meet with Ross Powers. So don't go running home on Sunday, be sure to stop by this benefit and help support his Level Field Fund which provides support for underprivileged athletes.
The famous bar at the base will have you rocking all weekend long. There will be no shortage of bands headlining at Grizzly's including Metropolis Funk All-Stars on Friday night and Lustre Kings and Burning Monk: Rage Against the Machine Tribute on Saturday. While you are there, enjoy some tasty après ski snacks like their epic nachos then head out onto the deck, sip some beers and get in a solid view of what's going on on the mountain while you listen to these amazing tunes.
Looking for a more upscale vibe to bridge the gap between your après ski shenanigans and the amazing evening music at Grizzly's and The Green Door Pub? Then The Firetower is the place for you. The food there is some of my favorite in the entire village, especially the Ahi Tuna Nachos and Dry Rubbed Wings. While their specialty après ski cocktails, like the Bacon Old Fashioned, are to die for. To go along with the delicious food and drink, The Firetower has expanded in the past week to include their new covered patio for guests to step out onto during après ski or even sit outside amidst the fire pits and enjoy the outdoors.