Colorado's beautiful Vail Valley epitomizes holiday magic and luxury. This is why it has become a premier winter destination, popular among regional and global travelers alike in the weeks leading up to New Year's.
Here at Vail Valley This Week, we work hard to offer the most up-to-date event and activity listings, whether it’s a comedy show at the Vilar Performing Arts Center in Beaver Creek, Nordic skiing on area trails or an Electronic Dance Music performance at Avon’s Agave nightclub. There's something to do for every interest and price point, and top picks will be listed here in blog format on a weekly basis – spanning regularly occurring activities, live music, annual celebrations and everything in between.
Now, let’s get down to business. Here are my top Vail entertainment suggestions for the next few weeks:
The experience Vail offers around Christmas and New Year’s Eve is unparalleled, and Vail Holidaze will not disappoint. Picture glowing lampposts lighting cobbled streets, pine garlands, red-ribbon bows and sparkling strings of lights draped with care. Then add in ice skating, hot chocolate and fresh, Colorado snow. It sounds pretty good, doesn’t it? A variety of activities are offered in Vail Village and Lionshead. It’s festive, classic and fun for all ages, spanning Dec. 16-18, then Dec. 31 for New Year’s Eve.
Photo (left and top): Vail Resorts
Beaver Creek Loves Kids – WinterFest
Take your kiddos over to see Santa (and capture a memorable picture) at Beaver Creek’s village plaza during après ski hours, then stay for the ambiance, which includes carolers, a FunFest Carnival, a Kids’ Winter Wonder Parade and more.
All WinterFest activities and performances are free and run Dec. 17-31 from around 3-6 p.m.
Plan to dine at one of Beaver Creek Resort's many and varied types of restaurants after WinterFest is done. Options include Hooked, a restaurant focused on fresh seafood and sushi, along with Revolution, a dining option offering a tasty selection of meats cooked rotisserie-style.
The Blind Boys of Alabama Performance
The Blind Boys of Alabama kick off the 2016 Holiday Week at Beaver Creek's beautiful Vilar Performing Arts Center. Hailing from Alabama, these gospel singers are known as both living legends and innovators, and they sing classic roots music along with modern holiday songs.
The performance is planned for Saturday, Dec. 17, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets cost $68 for adults and $28 for students.
Take a Guided Snowshoe Tour
Take a free, guided snowshoe tour on Vail Mountain with the Nature Discover Center. Starting Saturday, Dec. 17, this activity happens daily from 2-3 p.m. or from 5:30-6:30 p.m. on Thursdays through Saturdays throughout the winter season.
Snowshoes are provided for free, but participants must come dressed warmly and appropriately (snow pants, warm hat, gloves and sturdy boots are a must, according to Vail.com).
Bearcat Stables Winter Sleigh Rides
Located in Cordillera's Squaw Creek Valley, about 15 minutes west of Beaver Creek, Bearcat Stables offers seasonal sleigh rides for groups. Sleighs hold up to 14 guests, with afternoon and dinner options available. Schedule a private sleigh for special occasions.
Other amenities include warm drinks, a fire pit and a 15-passenger van for transportation. Sleigh rides will kick off in early December and run through March, weather permitting.
Photo: Bearcat Stables gallery
Crush That Corduroy
Last but not least, strap on two planks or one and get out on Vail Mountain and Beaver Creek for turns in Colorado’s white-gold. Early season runs will boast prime corduroy conditions. Be sure to enjoy it. Terrain will continue to open as snowfall and weather allows.
And don’t forget – think snow! Winter is just beginning.
Photo: Vail Resorts, Blog.vail.com