"It's a fun event. You even get a jib fest, which kind of gets you excited for that first big snowfall of the year," enthused 17-year-old Curt Horvath from the Traverse City area. "It reminds you that winter is just around the corner."
I ran into him recently at a local ski shop. He was talking about Boyne Mountain's second annual Skitoberfest, Saturday, Oct. 2. It's a celebration of the fall season, but also features an afternoon jib fest and Snowsports Summit hosted by Olympian Cary Adgate.
The Summit is free and open to the public from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. There will be information available on new gear, technique and training, and physical conditioning. It's also a chance for winter sports enthusiasts to get a little "park fix" before winter arrives a month or so later. Bring your gear and attitude. Boyne supplies the "snow," well, ice shavings, but it works.
Families will be able to enjoy horse drawn hayrides, cider press demonstrations, and a host of kid-friendly activities taking place throughout the afternoon.
The beer tent opens at 2 p.m. and will feature a dozen of Michigan's best microbreweries and gourmet food prepared by some of the region's top restaurants. A specialty wine tasting room will be available for those preferring a bit of the grape. Admission to the tent is $20 per person.
Free scenic chairlift rides to the top of the mountain will be available and the fall colors should be about peak. The Zipline Adventures will be going on for thrill seekers. The full experience is $59 per person.
Nightly lodging is available starting from $69 per person, based on double occupancy.