Winter Notes: There's plenty of time for snow fun before the big game

By MEGHAN McCARTHY McPHAUL February 01. 2018 7:54PM
An inflatable Patriot keeps watch outside ski patrol headquarters at Ragged Mountain. (Ragged Mountain Resort)

Wait, wait, wait! The Super Bowl doesn’t start until 6:30 Sunday evening. That leaves all weekend for skiing — or fat biking, or talking like a pirate and looking for treasure. And there’s plenty of all of that on tap this weekend, along with some ticket deals and ski demo opportunities to entice you to stay off the couch until game time.

“I think people treat the Super Bowl like Thanksgiving, with an invite list, piles of food and pre-gaming,” said Cannon Mountain’s Greg Keeler. “But you could easily ski until 2 p.m. Sunday and be back in Boston by 4:30.”

Saturday features several chances to ski or ride for a good cause, including two that involve dressing like a pirate.

At Cannon Mountain, the Adaptive Sports Partners of the North Country will host its annual — and local favorite — Pirates of the High Skis. From a kid-friendly, on-snow treasure hunt and a (temporary) tattoo parlor to a raffle and silent auction, all proceeds go toward ASPNC programming for year-round adaptive opportunities. For more information on ASPNC or the event, visit www.adaptivesportspartners.org.

Cannon will also have a Family Fun Night from 3-6 p.m. Saturday, with live music in the Cannonball Pub, a bouncy house for the kids, and under-the-lights skiing on the Huckerbrook handle tow from 4:30-6:30. More info at www.cannonmt.com.

Skiing pirates are also welcome at Waterville Valley Saturday for the Changes in Altitude Ski-a-thon, complete with an après ski beach bash and auction at the Conference Center. Proceeds benefit Waterville Adaptive Sports, whose website is www.watervilleadaptive.com. The Boarding for Breast Cancer (B4BC) benefit at Waterville (www.waterville.com) runs Saturday and Sunday, with a weekend-long raffle and a Sunday rail jam.

At Loon Mountain, Saturday is SKI for MS, a fundraising event to benefit people with multiple sclerosis. With on-mountain activities and an après ski party, this event supports the Can Do MS scholarship program, which provides funds for families with MS to attend programs that help understand the disease and improve health and quality of life for those with MS. More info at www.loonmt.com.



Frosty graffiti at Cannon Mountain shows support for the regional favorites ahead of Sunday’s Super Bowl. (Greg Keeler/Cannon Mountain)

Other fun, non-football-related events Saturday include the Polartec Fatty Fest at the Gunstock Outdoor Center, with demo fat bikes, route recommendations, and races from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. More info at www.gunstock.com. 

For Nordic-focused folks, Great Glen Trails will host its Kids Ski Fest Saturday from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Open to youngsters in grades 1-8, the Ski Fest will feature a ski maze, on-snow games, team relays, and a scavenger hunt. The day includes lunch at the base lodge, and the tubing hill is open all day, too. Interested kids and parents can find out more at www.greatglentrails.com. 

Super Bowl Sunday’s first ski deal actually begins Saturday evening at Crotched Mountain, where New England Patriots Midnight Madness begins Saturday at 5 p.m. and runs through 3 a.m. Sunday, with $33 night skiing tickets. That leaves plenty of time for a nap before kickoff.

Cannon has a Touchdown two-fer Sunday, with two lift tickets for $77. Cranmore is serving up two-day passes for $80 both Saturday and Sunday in honor of that area’s 80th anniversary, as well as a family four-pack tubing deal for $80. King Pine has a Big Game Day ticket at a half-day rate Sunday. Wildcat and Attitash are offering Game Day Special $35 tickets, and Parlor Skis will be at Wildcat with demos of their custom-made skis on game day. 

Sunday is also demo day at Bretton Woods, with Sport Thoma providing a quiver of skis to try out. Tickets there on Sunday are $52 for the Alpine area and $52 for a four-person pass at the Nordic Center. For those not traveling Sunday, there’s also a Big Game Party at the Omni Mount Washington Hotel from 5-10 p.m., with the Super Bowl on the big screen.

So, wear your Pats jersey if you must, but get out there and have some pre-game fun this weekend. The couch will be waiting.


Winter Notes is published on Fridays during ski season. Contact Meghan McCarthy McPhaul at meghan@meghanmcphaul.com.


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