Big week coming up at South Lake Tahoe. It's the Big Chill, something new.
Sponsored by Harrah's and Harveys with help from Heavenly, Marriott, Coca Cola and Budweiser, it includes aerial shows, kids' events and lots of plain fun. It's a 10-day affair and includes an appearance by The Temptations Friday and Saturday.
Here's a brief rundown on events:
Saturday at 2 a.m, 2 and 4 p.m., the Flying Aces will perform a trampoline exhibition featuring past Olympians at the California Lodge, plenty of seating.
Also Saturday, U.S. SKi Team member Chris Hernandez will lead a freestyle demonstration, probably on the World Cup run. No time given.
Wednesday, a Tubing Derby on the Adventure Peak Tubing Hill, noon to 3 p.m., registration begins at 11 a.m.
Next Friday, Snow Monsters Shebang, Perfect Ride Lift, at 1 p.m., Snowflake Slalom and Pig Air Jump for those 12 and under, skiers, snowboarders, boys and girls. Fee is $5 for both events and each family will receive a free copy of the video "The Snow Monsters Meet Mother Nature." Same day registration at the California Lodge 8:30 to 10 a.m., limited to first 200 children. Parent or guardian must sign permission form.
Next Saturday, Kinder Cup Championship on the World Cup run, starts at 10 a.m. For those 6 and under who can stop and turn.
Same day, Aerial Assault, World Cup run, 1 p.m, Saturday and Sunday evening performance Saturday night following a 7 p.m. torchlight parade on World Cup, and before a fireworks display at 7:45 p.m.
Next Sunday, South Shore Soldiers Rail Slide Exhibition, led by Jimmy Halopoffm , X-games gold medal champ, featuring other big-name pro skiers and boarders.
Off-hill events include a Sun & Snow Barbecue and Chili Cookoff at Harvey's, Saturday; Bacardi Big Singles Night Out at Altitude Nightclub, Saturday and next Saturday. Also on Saturday a wine paring dinner at Harrah's Special Events Center.
And for laughs, there will be a comedy marathon at Bud Freeman's Improv comedy club at Harveys. There's an ice carving display at the Heavenly Gondola-Marriott Courtyard Wednesday and Thursday.
For details call (800) 786-8208 or check www.laketahoebigchill.com.
What else is happening:
-- At Mount Rose the move is on to open the fabled Chutes area off the front of the mountain. Long off-limits but frequently skied or boarded anyhow, the Chutes will offer some real steeps through the trees for Rose. Also in the works is the razing of the East Bowl (Slide Mountain) lodge and bigger 300-seater and a replacement of the fixed four-seat lift there with a detachable four- or six-seater. No fixed timetable but it's something to look forward to.
--At Tahoe Cross Country in Tahoe City, the second annual Gourmet Ski Tour will be held March 9 from 3 to 5:30 p.m. Idea is to enjoy treats from several local restaurants. including the River Grill. Tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for XC Tahoe pass holders, $5 for children 12 and under and $30 for a family of four. Pick tickets up at the resort or by calling (530) 583-5475 or check www.tahoeexc.org. This is a benefit for the Tahoe Cross Country Ski Education Association.
--At Homewood on the West Shore, it's a Senior Moments Day with a lift ticket, lesson and lunch for $25 for those 62 and over. Next day is a taco feed and pro patrol race. If you've never tried Homewood it's deceiving; from Highway 88 it looks like nothing, but back behind the hill some fine trails exist. And the view from the barbecue shack is stunning.
--Squaw Valley USA kicks off a new and revitalized Snow Festival on Friday with the first celebration of the week, the Opening Ceremonies. This annual tradition and family favorite features a torchlight parade, fireworks, laser light show, and opening night party at the Plaza Bar.
The celebration begins at dusk on Squaw Valley USA's lower mountain as members of the Squaw Valley Ski School descend the slopes of KT-22/Exhibition in a torchlight parade complemented by a laser light presentation and a spectacular fireworks show.
After the outdoor extravaganza, the celebration moves indoors to the Plaza Bar where revelers can dance the night away to the high-energy vibes of the Global Funk Council and the roaming DJ beat of Space Cowboy.
The following evening Squaw Valley hosts the Snow Festival Saturday Night Concert with the popular band Particle. Particle's high-octane funk and vibrant electronic performances fuel the dance party at the Olympic Village Lodge. Doors open at 8:30 p.m. and the show is expected to sell out.
The North Tahoe Snow Festival runs through March 9 with events and activities planned every day and night, offering locals and visitors alike the opportunity to take part in this annual celebration.
Details about the Snow Festival are available by calling (530) 583-5605 or online at www.tahoesnowfestival.com.
-- As part of the week's North Tahoe Snow Festival, Northstar-at-Tahoe is bringing back the Great Chef Relay Race held for local restaurants and their employees on Monday. It includes two parts, racing and cooking. Each team will have four participants made up of males and females who must be at least 18. A racecourse will be set up for each member to run through. One competitor will have to ride a snowbike twice. Then it's off to the Lodge at Big Springs' deck to prepare a meal.
Each team will be allowed to use anything for preparation and presentation that it can carry in two backpacks. Mystery ingredients will be provided by Northstar at the beginning of the cooking portion of the contest. Teams will be allowed one hour to prepare and present their dish. Wine paring is encouraged. Dishes will be judged on presentation, taste, and creativity.
The entry fee is $100 per team, which includes lift tickets, race fees, food and beverage costs, drink coupons, prizes and the end of the day party at the Lodge at Big Spring with a keg tapping and live music from South Lake Tahoe band Lavish Green. Entry forms are due by March 1 so don't delay. Those not in the food and beverage industry are also encouraged to come out and enjoy the fun.
For information contact Dave Benge (530) 562-2262 or Dedra Kirk, (530) 562-3544.
Sam Bauman is the Nevada Appeal Diversions Editor.