Aspen Gay Ski Week Celebrates 35 Years

By: Jim Guttau

Aspen Gay Ski Week, the nation’s largest and oldest gay ski event, will celebrate its 35th anniversary January 15-22, 2011. This year the presenting sponsor is Bud Light, and proceeds from the event will benefit GLSEN (the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network), the Trevor Project, the Point Foundation, and the local program TEACH (Teachers Empowering Agents of Change), the Western Colorado AIDS Project, the Gender Identity Center of Colorado, as well as local schools of the Roaring Fork Valley.

"With the theme 'Through the Years,' this year's gay ski week will embrace our beginnings thirty-five years ago in 1977," remarked Bryan Gonzales, co-producer of Aspen Gay Ski Week and program director of Roaring Fork Gay and Lesbian Community Fund. "World-famous Aspen plays host to a week of epic skiing, apr├Ęs ski events at the Limelight Lodge, exciting nightly events and the popular downhill costume competition."

Beyond fantastic skiing, Aspen Gay Ski Week showcases nightly events, including:

Opening Party at Baldwin Gallery. Kick the week off in style at this two-story gallery in downtown Aspen. Catered by the famous Caribou Club, the party will be all inclusive of food and drink.

Monday Late Night, “70s Glow Party” at Hunter Bar, where the staff creates a retro party for guests.

Tuesday Late Night, “80s Prom” at Escobar, the underground bar that resembles an airplane cabin.

Aspen is home to world-class shopping, and for the annual Boutique Night Stroll, participating boutiques will be open late. Wednesday Late Night will benefit TEACH and is hosted by Aspen’s premier private night club, The Caribou Club.

At Belly Up, the Demented Divas star in UNCUT: Letting It All Hang Out, a comedy show starring Nuclia Waste, Portia Potty, Iona Trailer and Gabrellia Butz’In. After the show, DJ Corey Craig takes the stage, and attendees can dance the night away.

Bud Light, Instinct & Svedka present Studio 2054—the mountaintop party of the future with elements of the past. Begin the night with a moonlit ride up the gondola, then dance the night away with sounds from DJ Ryan Kenny.

A free event at Lewis Ice Arena, the Friendship Cup, the Gay vs. Straight Ice Hockey Championships, precedes the pool party. Aspen Recreation Center will once again hosts the infamous pool party, featuring DJs, dancing, hot tubs, water slides, a lazy river and open bars.

“There is something for everyone at Aspen Gay Ski Week, even for the non-skier,” said Gonzales. “Aspen offers visitors world renowned restaurants, indulgent spas and first class shopping. We are pulling out all the stops for this big anniversary, continuing to be the premier GLBT winter travel event.”

Check out some photos from last year below, then visit:

Photo above: Matt Powers
Photos below: Dick Mitchell