The 2011 RIDE Shakedown makes its only U.S. appearance for the second year in a row at The Summit at Snoqualmie. The made-for-television event scheduled March 18-19 makes for big spectator appeal.

"We're expecting more crowds this year since people got their feet wet last year," Holly Lippert, spokesperson for the ski area, told us. "It's the most professional event we put on with top work from our groomers and the Shakedown staff."

The event attracts 40 top pro men and women snowboarders and 50 amateurs to compete for a $35,000 purse at Summit West. The competition pairs up a specially-tailored course that combines big air with unique rails, and a festival that includes booths with giveaway samples.

"It's engineered to be on television," added Lippert. "It's pretty breathtaking." The festival combines high-flying air stunts linked to tricks thrown on several unique rail features built just for the event by RIDE Shakedown. Last year's half-time show featured the Seattle Seahawks Marching Band. Spectators can watch for free.

Friday launches the event with amateur qualifying rounds. The rail jam evening competition takes place 6:30-8:30 p.m. Semi-finals start 11 a.m. Saturday followed by a Snowboarder Magazine autograph session with pro riders. The RIDE Shakedown finals are scheduled 3:30-5 p.m.

After parties take place at 10 p.m. both nights at the Snoqualmie Casino for those 21 years and older. Friday's party takes place in the SnoLounge while Saturday's after party featues Del Tha Funkee Homosapien playing in the ballroom. Tickets cost $10 in advance through Ticketmaster or $15 at the door.

The 2011 RIDE Shakedown at The Summit at Snoqualmie will be carried by Root Sports on Direct TV at 5:30 p.m. Pacific Time on April 2.

More information.

Check out the trailer for the 2011 RIDE Shakedown from YouTube: