Aspen Untucked: What to do in-between the races | AspenTimes.com

Aspen Untucked: What to do in-between the races

by BARBARA PLATTS

One of the biggest and most vital skiing competitions in the world has taken over Aspen this week. The legendary FIS World Cup Finals is in its 50th year in Aspen. This also is the first time the Finals have been in the U.S. for two decades. It’s needless to say (however, I will say it anyway) that this is a big deal for our charming ski town.

If you’re like me, you aren’t entirely well versed on this World Cup business. Sure, you know it’s important and brings in athletes from around the globe. You may even know that it spans over five days and takes place on Aspen Mountain.

But that’s probably close to where the knowledge ends. You probably aren’t entirely aware of what a “Super-G” race is or how to pronounce Kjetil Jansrud … perhaps you don’t even know who that is. Don’t fret; I’m in the same boat. But the point here isn’t what we know or what we most certainly do not know. The point is that we are all here, batched together in this town for a world-class, international sporting event, so we might as well make the most of it.

Besides the racing, there will be several happenings through Sunday that are worth taking note of. Below are a few that caught my eye.

Aspen History’s Ski Racing Exhibition

The Aspen Historical Society joined forces with Aspen Skiing Company and Ajax Holdings to create a historical exhibit in Wagner Park that highlights ski-racing history and how it shaped Aspen’s development over the decades. One of the artifacts on display is a snow screw. It’s an old school (we are talking 1930s) version of a snow cat. This exhibit is open to the public from Wednesday to Sunday, 1 to 7 p.m. There also will be vintage ski footage on large screens in the park and at the base of Lift 1.

Nighttime concerts

Ski Co’s Bud Light Hi-Fi Concert Series kicks off its 2017 schedule Thursday, Friday and Saturday in Wagner Park. Thursday is blues band Vintage Trouble. Saturday is the beloved rapper Michael Franti and Spearhead. The show that caught my eye, though, is the one Friday: gypsy punk band Gogol Bordello. These guys are ridiculous in the best way possible. Even though I rarely listen to their music in the comfort of my own home, I make a point to see them whenever they’re performing nearby. This is because the New York-based band is absolutely incredible live. Each member always gives a theatrical and lively performance that will reside in one’s memory for years to come.

An international wine experience

The ever-popular restaurant Jimmy’s is known for it’s delectable cocktails. However, over World Cup, it’s honing in on its international wine selection. In honor of all the country’s competing in the World Cup (there are 13 total), there will be a specialty wine to try. Highlights include a German Leitz Dragonstone Riesling, an Austrian Domaine Wachau Gruner Veltliner Federspeil and a Swsis Robert Gillaird Dole des Montes Valais. And that’s just to name a few. Customers can by the wine by the bottle or by the glass.

Boom, boom, pop

If there’s one thing we love in Aspen (besides skiing, hiking and general revelry) it’s fireworks. At any valid opportunity, we shoot them off of Aspen Mountain, lighting up the whole town for all ages to see. On Saturday night at 8:45 p.m., we will do it again. Be ready by getting to a location where Ajax is completely visible. The colors from the bursts will contrast the beautiful white slopes in the background.

Whether you’re a connoisseur of ski-racing or a complete novice when it comes to the sport, there are plenty of ways to get involved in the celebratory atmosphere of this weekend. Check out AspenSnowmass.com for more information on the schedule.

See you out there!

Even though she’s a ski racing rookie, Barbara Platts is very excited to join the festivities this week for the World Cup. Reach her at bplatts.000@gmail.com, but not with questions about the World Cup … she will not be very helpful.


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