Winter sports festivals peak the interest of massive audiences, and continue to grow year on year.
Incredible atmospheres, some of the most epic snowsports and music talent on show, and the chance to get out on the snow everyday? It’s a no brainer. Here’s the lowdown on five of the biggest events of the year!
Winter X Games
Perhaps the most notorious winter sports event of the year, the Winter X Games (or Aspen Snowmass) takes over Aspen every January in typically extreme fashion. Televised by ESPN, the Games – which take place in late January – put the world’s best snow sports stars to the test atop Colorado’s infamous Buttermilk Mountain.
“Aspen Snowmass is a playground for the adventurous. For those who dare to embrace what our four mountains have to offer with fortitude and gratitude. This place ignites something within, from its deep powder to its quirky characters. It grips you and revitalises you— mind, body and spirit— one run, one day, one week and one season at a time.” – Winter X Games
All events are free and open to the public and private lessons are available on site. This is one of the biggest action sports/music events on the calendar, so don’t miss out!
Air + Style
Europe’s premium annual snowboarding contest, Air + Style opened it’s slopes in 1994 and hasn’t looked back since. Whilst Innsbruck remains its spiritual home – pulling in thousands of revellers every year – the event has expanded in recent years, with similar meets now being held in Beijing, Los Angeles and Sydney.
Showcasing some of snowboarding’s biggest names, the centrepiece contest pushes tour athletes to the absolute max from a 16-storey ramp. Add some world class music acts to the lineup and you’ve got something a bit special!
Across the border, Snowboxx takes place every March at the Avoriaz Ski Resort in France.
This one’s for the doers.
Snowboarders and skiers can put their skills to the test on some of the finest pistes the alps has to offer. Slopes vary in difficulty and accommodate for all abilities.
“If you are keen to hit the first lift every day, there is plenty for you to explore. Head up early to the Floret area for some long windy runs, then work your way over to the glacier as the day gets older.” – Snowboxx Festival
With exclusive access to the Snowboxx Village, Festival goers can experience the best in live music up until the early hours, party-down in igloos and do it all over again the next day! Where do we sign up?
We’re back in Austria once more for Snowbombing. Hosted in the alpine town of Mayrhofen, the event draws in huge crowds each year for what has become an almost legendary celebration of snow sports and live music.
Established in 1999, the event has matured into one of the most innovative festivals out there – drawing in swathes of winter sports fanatics every year. Get ready for addictive mountain runs of all shapes and sizes, ‘igloo raves, enchanted forest parties, an underground tennis club turned super club, luxury spas, authentic alpine cuisine and not a tent in sight’.
The World Ski and Snowboard Festival
We thought we’d go out with a bang – and The World Ski and Snowboard Festival fits the bill perfectly. British Columbia’s resident music, sports and arts spectacular is second to none when it comes to mind-blowing action and sensational entertainment.
From the demo park, where visitors can test ride top-spec skis and snowboards, competitions and the superb Whistler Blackcomb slopes, to incredible musicians and comedy showdowns, there really is something for everyone at this massive 7-day festival!
NB: ‘There is no admission fee to take part in the World Ski & Snowboard Festival. Many of the events are free!
Free events include the daily concerts on the main stage in the village and in the clubs during Kokanee Freeride Club Series (19+ only), State of the Art, the Whistler DogFest, Mascot Mayhem, and many other activities, events and showcases throughout the Village walkways.
‘Tickets are required for a few of the evening events, including The END, Intersection, the Pro Photographer Showdown and the 72hr. Filmmaker Showdown.’ – WSSF
Get them before they’re gone…
Tickets for these events are always in high demand and go super fast – so choose your favourite fest and get your name down while you can!