The resort is practically run by a staff of Australian imports who annually come from south of the equator looking for the winter sweet ride at North America's most recognized resort. (The picture is of other Aussies celebrating, but we liked the flag). "This place wouldn't run without them here," says Canadian skier Jamie Cuthbert. The mountain does in fact do plenty of recruiting for staff from Downunder and that always means a party on the country's big day, with events at local bars and clubs and higher than usual sales at the already active liquor stores. "It's time to get the drink on!" says Steve from Melbourne, who is enjoying his first year in Whistler and was one of the many flag-wearing countrymen getting an early start while riding Whistler's icy but sun-drenched slopes.