Grouse Mountain in Vancouver, B.C., celebrates Christmas every December with holiday events. But this year is special, with new lifts also coming on line.
Skiers and riders at will find two new quad chairlifts this winter-just in time for Christmas. The resort expects to complete the $3 million upgrade before holiday vacationers hit the mountain.
Both the Peak and Greenway chairs have been upgraded to high-speed quads. Greenway services beginner terrain, and Peak accesses both blue square and black diamond runs.
Even before those lifts are completed, visitors to Grouse can join in the resort's Peak of Christmas activities. Many run daily throughout the month until Dec. 23. Santa's workshop is open daily noon until 8 p.m. You can even meet a reindeer and learn more about the wildlife of the north in the daily ranger talks at 2 and 4 p.m.
Grouse's Theater in the Sky also shows classic Christmas movies, and Vancouver choirs sing carols. Rent skates to waltz across the 8,000-square-foot ice skating pond, and when the snow covers the plateau, you can take a sleigh ride, too.
The resort's Spirit Galley also hosts the spectacular SOS Children's Village Parade of Trees. The tree decorating competition, sponsored by 30 local corporations, is a fundraiser to support foster children.
Christmas activities are included in Grouse Mountain admission prices. Those who purchase lift tickets or season passes may also join in the festivities for free.
Visit OnTheSnow.com's 2008 Holiday Guide for a library of news stories and features about special holiday events from visits by Santa (even his reindeer) to where the best parties are planned for New Year's Eve at the world's mountain resorts.