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Whistler Underground: Grassroots Lectures & Talks You Need to Know About

On the surface, this not-so-little mountain town is pretty awesome. Monolithic mountains. Adrenaline-fueled activities. An après scene surely to spark some “This one time, in Whistler…” stories.

But beneath the surface, Whistler is actually even more incredible than first meets the eye. Quietly, members of our community gather to exchange ideas, expand horizons, and debate subject matter both funny and serious.

Community-driven lectures and talks offer the perfect opportunity to get to know Whistler—the real Whistler. Whether you’re a first-time visitor, a regular Weekend Warrior, or a through-and-through local, you should definitely check out the following events:

The Green Moustache’s Talks and Workshops

Fuel for your mind and body: that’s what the Green Moustache is all about. They whip up some mean juices and salads, but this local business also hosts talks, workshops, and events to bring the community together at their nourishing educational experiences.

From workshops in the kitchen to lifestyle makeovers—and everything in between—the Green Moustache’s events are sure to leave you feeling greener and meaner—or at least more inspired than ever.

Green-Moustache-talk

Whistler Public Library’s Quest Lecture Series

Whistler might not have its own university as of yet, but that doesn’t mean we can’t indulge in a little intellectual discussion.

Throughout the academic year, faculty from Quest University down in Squamish trek up to our beautiful library (seriously, it’s an architectural masterpiece) to enlighten the audience on a variety of topics. Past lectures have ranged from understanding the science of sleep to the philosophical aspects of happiness to the hunt for planets in our galaxy.

Swing by the library to find out when the next talk is. Oh, and don’t worry—there aren’t any pop quizzes.

Whistler Museum’s Inspired Events

Yes, Whistler has a museum—and it just so happens to be the unofficial local authority on everything that’s going on around town.

You never know what you’ll get at an event hosted by the Whistler Museum. One week, you might encounter a local skier presenting his research on the powers of collaboration; the next, it could be a packed house ready to debate whether or not the snowboard industry has sold out. One thing that is consistent: the members of the audience often have as much to contribute as the leader of the session. This is the place to come to meet some of Whistler’s most brilliant minds.

Whistler-Museum

The Mountain Multiplicity Show

This once-a-year event takes place during the World Ski and Snowboard Festival every April. It essentially represents everything that’s amazing about mountain culture, condensed into just a few hours.

We used to say that the Mountain Multiplicity Show was the most underrated event of WSSF, but the truth is that the word is starting to spread. People are starting to pay attention to this show, which puts eight (or so) individuals in the spotlight, each with incredible stories to share about living in the mountains.

Photographers, filmmakers, writers, athletes, and otherwise unclassifiable adventurers give short presentations about something that’s usually one part utterly insane, one part completely aspirational, and one part explosively brilliant.

mountain-multiplicity

Keen on learning more about Whistler’s underground knowledge-sharing scene? Ask around: check out the local papers, chat up a bartender, or scan bulletin boards to see what’s going on around town—and come participate!

Summer Music: Whistler’s Live Music Scene

Photo Courtesy of Tourism Whistler / Mike Crane
Photo Courtesy of Tourism Whistler / Mike Crane

There’s something about summertime that makes live music that much better.

Maybe it’s the outdoor venues, the festival wardrobe, or the fact that you don’t need to wait in a coat check line up at the end of the show. Whatever it is, there’s something positively magical about live music in the summer.

Despite being a small-ish town, Whistler’s live music scene is brag-worthy, to say the least. Case in point: there is some kind of live music event happening nearly every weekend in the summer. Here’s a highlight reel of Whistler’s best summer acts.

The Outdoor Concert Series

Free outdoor concerts at sunset? Yes, please!

Whistler is completely spoiled by the outdoor concert series that takes place throughout the summer. Shows take place throughout the season, usually on weekend evenings—check out the schedule here.

Artists range from up-and-coming indie bands to established classics, and each concert features two back-to-back artists, so you’ll get a little bit of everything.

Bring: A blanket to sit on, a sweater for when the sun goes down, and some spare change for a DQ ice cream (pre-sunset) and a latte (post-sunset).

The Music Festivals

We’re lucky to have fabulous neighbours: Squamish to the south and Pemberton to the north. We’re even luckier that both of these towns happen to host major multi-day music festivals in the summer.

Check out some of these bands from the 2014 line ups: Outkast, Metric, Modest Mouse, and Justice (at the Pemberton Music Festival); and Arcade Fire, Arctic Monkeys, Serena Ryder and Eminem (at the Squamish Valley Music Festival).

Bring: Cheap sunglasses that you don’t mind losing, an empty water bottle, and your cell phone—pre-download the relevant festival apps.

Bars, Pubs, and Clubs

The beauty with Whistler is that you just never know what you’ll encounter—a casual weekday night about town can easily transform into an unexpected live show featuring Swollen Members or Hilltop Hoods in a teensy, tiny venue.

Even if there are no big acts in town, our local talent will keep you plenty entertained. Swear you’re not the “dancing type”? I challenge you to head to the Dubh Linn Gate on a night where Ruckus Deluxe is playing and not make your way to the dance floor—impossible. From afternoon piano crooners at the Fairmont’s Mallard Lounge to open mic nights at the Crystal Lounge, there’s pretty much always something going on in Whistler’s establishments.

Grab a free copy of our local paper, the Pique, and flip towards the back to see the weekly musical events happening around town—or just wander in the Village and see what you stumble across.

Bring: ID, tip money, and your dancing shoes

Whistler’s Bonus Shows

Summer in Whistler is nuts: there’s a major sporting event, festival, or race of sorts happening nearly every weekend from the May Long Weekend to Labour Day. Every so often, one of these major events will feature some live concerts throughout Whistler Village. Even if you’re not partaking in the event itself, you’re usually more than welcome to drop in on the shows.

Keep your eyes open for live concerts at GO Fest (May), the Wanderlust Yoga Festival (August) and Crankworx (August), and you just might find yourself face-to-face with Moby, The Sheepdogs, or Five Alarm Funk.

Bring: A piece of clothing that will allow your friends to spot you in the crowd and a big bag (these events usually have tons of booths with free samples)

Whistler Beer 101

Everything in Whistler just seems to go better with beer.

Long day playing in the powder? Head straight to après and order a beer. Sweltering summer day? Grab a spot on a patio and get thee a pint. Filling time during shoulder season? Better pair those back-t0-back ski flicks with a cold one.

Since Whistler and beer fit oh-so-perfectly together, it simply makes sense that the local beer culture is strong and proud. In fact, there’s more to beer in Whistler than you might know:

Case One: The Whistler Brewing Company

whistler beer

Tucked away south of Whistler Village in Function Junction is Whistler’s own brewing company, where beers with locally inspired names (like Black Tusk Ale and Powder Mountain Lager) are being brewed seven days a week. For 25 years, this craft brewery has been supplying Whistler’s pubs, bars, and liquor stores with some incredibly flavourful suds.

To get the full Whistler Brewing Company experience, head down at 2:30 PM or 4:00 PM on Tuesdays through Sundays for a behind-the-scenes tour of the factory capped off with a sampling of the brewery’s creations. You can also pop by any time to grab a pint and a bite to eat at the on-site Tap House.

Keep your eyes peeled for seasonal concoctions, like the summery Paradise Valley Grapefruit Ale (complete with dried grapefruit rind) or the infamous Whistler Winter Dunkel (it’s not ski season without it). Even those who claim not to like beer will be seduced by the Valley Trail Chestnut Ale– but you’ll have to wait until fall to try it.

Case Two: Whistler Brewhouse Restaurant

whistler beer

As you meander down the Whistler Village stroll, take note when you spot the infamous Olympic Rings: you’re right at the front door of one of Whistler’s best spots to grab a beer. The Whistler Brewhouse Restaurant (or, simply, the Brewhouse) brews its beer right on site– the tough part is deciding which one to order.

If you’re struggling to choose between the Grizzly Brown Ale, the Lifty Lager, the 5 Rings IPA, or any of the other tasty selections on tap, not to worry: you can always order a flight to sample them all.

As a bonus, the food at the Brewhouse is top notch, and it’s the perfect place to be no matter the season: in the summer, grab a spot on the huge, sunny patio; and in the winter, nestle up close to the wood-burning fireplace. It only makes sense that a four seasons resort would have a four seasons brew house.

Case Three: Whistler Village Beer Festival

whistler beer

After you’ve sampled the best of Whistler’s beer, you’ll be ready for the Big Leagues: that, of course, would be the Whistler Village Beer Festival. The four-day Festival, spanning from September 11 to 14, features 50 breweries and more than 150 different beers. Attendees can sample beers from near (26 British Columbia breweries are featured) and far (Italy, Belgium, Netherlands—the list goes on).

Taking place right in the Village, the Whistler Village Beer Festival will be the perfect way to cap off a summer of enjoying brews under the sun. Tickets are on sale now—act fast to snipe up a pair of Gate Crasher tickets, which will get you access to all of the beer an hour before the event opens to the general public.

Cheers!

[Interview] with Artist Andrea Mueller

Andrea Mueller Contemporary Whistler Artist

Maybe it’s the incredible scenery that surrounds us. Maybe it’s fueled by the action sports we play. Maybe there’s just something in the water.

Whatever it is, there’s something about Whistler that inspires creativity. From photographers to filmmakers, painters to writers, there is no shortage of talented people in our mountain town.

Andrea Mueller is no exception: this local Whistler contemporary artist has had her work displayed in countless venues and art shows around town and her work has certainly caught the eye of the public. In 2013 Andrea was voted the Best Local Female Artist by Pique Newsmagazine’s annual Best Of Whistler Awards (winners are chosen based on public votes).

Andrea’s dedication to the local arts community, both as an artist and in her role as Visual Arts Programmer with the Whistler Arts Council, has helped Whistler’s art scene flourish.

So what’s it like being an artist in Whistler? Here’s what Andrea had to say.

Andrea Mueller Contemporary Whistler Artist

Summit Lodge: Thanks for taking the time to talk with us, Andrea! How long have you been living in Whistler now?

Andrea Mueller: I’ve been coming to Whistler since 1996, and I’ve been living in Whistler for ten years.

Summit Lodge: How do you think living in Whistler has helped shape you, as an artist?

Andrea Mueller: Whistler is a little pond, so you can find a way to be a big fish really easily. There’s a lot of support in the community for up-and-coming and emerging artists. You can stand out and get the confidence that you wouldn’t necessarily get in a larger community, and then build form there.

Summit Lodge: Tell me about the first painting you ever sold. What was that like?

Andrea Mueller: I honestly don’t remember the first painting I ever sold!

Summit Lodge: What about the most recent one?

Andrea Mueller: The most recent ones that I have been doing have been commissions. That’s been really great—I love doing commissions for people. It’s fun! You get to collaborate a little bit.

Most recently, I did the graphic for a Roxy snowboard. That was taking it to a new medium, which is really interesting for me.

Andrea Mueller Contemporary Whistler Artist

Summit Lodge: Animals are a recurring theme in your work, and you’re not afraid to use colour. How would you describe your style? What is it about animals that you like to capture?

Andrea Mueller: I used to actually paint with more muted colours– a lot of navy blues and browns– when I was back in Toronto. For some reason, moving to Whistler gave me this new vibrancy in my colour palette. I don’t know if that’s because of the natural surroundings or the beauty of the town or the vibrant people—I’m not really sure how that happened, but it did! I find that interesting when I look back on my work.

I would like to think that I’m ever evolving as an artist. I don’t particularly want to stay with one specific style or genre. I really like to play and I like to try new things. Right now, I’m actually working on a new style again.

The animal imagery: for me, I like talking about inter-connectivity. A lot of the time, we get caught up in the hubbub of what the newest gadget is, but we forget about the simple things that really make the world a beautiful place.

Summit Lodge: Your art is instantly recognizable to anyone who’s been living in Whistler long enough, and you’ve had you work featured all around town, from local galleries and shops to festival exhibits. What’s your advice to an artist trying to make it in Whistler?

Andrea Mueller: Get out and come to as many art events as you can!

Talk to people. The artist community in Whistler is really open. They’re willing to share their knowledge. As long as you are approachable and can come up and have a conversation with people, they will definitely be willing to take you under their wing. Get involved! Do something! Think outside of the box! Be creative—if you’re an artist, you should be able to do that!

Summit Lodge: You went to school in Toronto, a huge city with a thriving arts scene. What was it like going from that to a smaller town like Whistler, which obviously has a smaller arts community?

Andrea Mueller: When I first got here, Whistler was a lot different to what it is now, even. It was slower than it is today, as far as pace is concerned.

Coming from Toronto where everything is go-go-go, I actually did get really frustrated when I first moved here. I found that people were taking their time, taking in the scenery, smelling the roses—and I couldn’t understand it at first.

I’ve mellowed out for sure since I first moved here, but I still take the drive and the “go go” attitude from Toronto and apply it to Whistler. If you have the energy and you want to make something happen in Whistler, it’s a place where you can still do that. I appreciate that about Whistler.

Andrea Mueller Contemporary Whistler Artist

Summit Lodge: What role do you see the arts playing in Whistler’s future?

Andrea Mueller: Right now, I think the arts in Whistler are very integral. People are taking more notice. I’ve noticed that people are talking about the things that are happening, anything from the Whistler Arts Council to what Stephen Vogler is doing at The Point, the more grassroots things. People are actually noticing all the arts in town.

Moving forward, I’m hoping that it gets woven into the whole adventure sports aspect of Whistler a little bit more. We have the Audain Art Museum coming, which is fantastic. I’m hoping for good things for the arts community in Whistler—some more publicity and hopefully some more funding!

Summit Lodge: Where is your favourite place in Whistler to check out the works of local artists?

Andrea Mueller: In the summertime, Art Walk for sure because there are so many different artists that are in the different cafes in town, and there is a huge variety. It doesn’t just focus on one genre, whereas a lot of the galleries in town have more a specific feeling and are interested in a specific type of work.

I also like the underground art parties—you have to look for those, though!

State of the Art is another good event. It’s always a good night and it brings out a lot of people. It depends on the season, really.

Summit Lodge: Thank you so much for your time and insight, Andrea!

To learn more about Andrea, check out her website: Andrea Likes Art.

5 Sustainable Restaurants in Whistler

Here in Whistler, we care about our environment. A lot.

Nature is our playground, our main attraction, and our very spirit. So it only makes sense that, as a community, we want to celebrate it and protect it.

If you feel the same way that we do, then you’ll want to check out these five restaurants the next time you visit Whistler. From coffee shop to high-end restaurant and everything in between, the places below have a few things in common. First, whatever they make, they make it really well. Second, they’re each doing their little bit to help make Whistler even more sustainable. Check it out:

1. Alta Bistro

Foodies might recognize the name of this popular-yet-unpretentious bistro: Alta Bistro is one of Whistler’s top dining hot spots (and in a town with many world renown restaurants, that’s saying a lot).

Amid seasonally inspired dishes featuring foods of the Pacific Northwest, you’ll find a menu based around local, ethically sourced food and drink. They buy from nearby farms and artisans, use Oceanwise fish from local waters, and serve sustainably farmed wine.

When it comes to sustainability, Alta Bistro checks all the boxes: an Urban Cultivator provides them with their own herbs, they return organic waste as compost to a local farm; and they cook with renewable hydro-electric power. The food is divine and the cocktails are out-of-this world. A trip to Whistler is simply not complete without a meal at Alta Bistro.

2. The Green Moustache

SL-Green-Moustache

Slightly less formal but equally delicious, The Green Moustache is an organic juice, smoothie and live bar serving up luscious local and organic meals, snacks, and treats. If you’re looking for a nutrition infusion, stop by The Green Moustache for a colourful juice bursting with antioxidants or a vibrant salad packed with fresh veggies.

More than just food, The Green Moustache is about building a community focused on physical and environmental health. They host talks and events, like “How to Clean Just About Anything—Chemical Free!” and “Sweet Alternatives Dessert Party”. You’ll feel great supporting this awesome local company.

3. Creekbread

If the idea of cozying up inside a big, log cabin in front of a roaring fire sounds good to you, then head straight to Creekbread. This local favourite is equally suited towards a casual family dinner as it is for a celebration with friends. The menu is simple—pizza and salad—but the flavours are anything but.

Using local, organic ingredients as much as possible, Creekbread crafts unique, mouthwater pizzas featuring toppings like British Columbia grown mushrooms, Pemberton potatoes, cheeses from Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands, and homemade sausage. They rely only on fire to cook their pizzas, right before your eyes. It all makes for a meal that you won’t forget.

4. Mount Currie Coffee Company

SL-Mt-Currie-Coffee

Whistler residents rejoiced when the beloved Pemberton coffee shop, Mount Currie Coffee Company, opened a second location in Whistler Village. Not only do they serve up a mean latte, but they aim to be as sustainable as possible.

Some of their initiatives include using organic local produce, compostable flatware and to go cups, and natural meats and organic eggs. They also take recycling and composting very seriously: they even won a local competition held by Whistler’s Centre for Sustainability with their big ideas for a composting proposal. So stop by for your daily  caffeine infusion and grab a breakfast, while you’re at it.

5. Aura

We cap our list off with another fine dining restaurant. Aura’s farm-to-table approach yields delicious dishes made up with fresh ingredients from their rooftop garden and local farms, foragers and fisheries.

Chef Paul Moran knows how to work with local foods: he leads foraging classes, showing students the best nearby spots to find savory mushrooms. He serves up the findings in multi course dinners with so many delicious flavours and textures that your head will be spinning. The meal is best enjoyed from Aura’s patio overlooking the beautiful Nita Lake.

Are You Tough Enough for Tough Mudder in Whistler?

Tough-Mudder

Think you’re tough?

It’s time to put it to the test: for the third year in a row, Whistler will soon be welcoming back thousands of racers ready to conquer the Tough Mudder obstacle course.

Tough What?

On June 21 and 22, 2014, teams of athletes will set off to tackle the endurance event. Though the course comprises 16 to 20 kilometers of running (the exact course for this year’s event has yet to be released), Tough Mudder is so much more than a running race. In fact, it’s not a race at all: it’s an untimed challenge designed to push boundaries, test strengths, and help people overcome fears.

Overcoming Obstacles

Participants will have to stop periodically to maneuver over, under, and occasionally through some pretty spectacular obstacles. From scaling walls to army crawls, from electric shocks to giant rocks, there’s always a surprise around the corner ready to challenge those brave enough to participate in the event.

To overcome these tests, individuals will have to learn to rely on those around them—sometime teammates, and sometimes perfect strangers. Teamwork, along with courage, personal accomplishment, and – of course—fun, are the core values built around each and every Tough Mudder event.

Can You Handle Whistler?

Whistler’s Tough Mudder course is one of many worldwide. Events take place in the United States, Australia, and Germany, among other places. Whistler’s course, located just south of town in the Whistler Olympic Park, is known for its signature steep, rocky terrain and dense forests, and features a balance of both natural and man-made obstacles sure to send shivers down anyone’s back.

Take the Leap of Faith, for instance: participants will need to perfect their running-leap as the attempt to grasp onto, and navigate along, suspended cargo net. Coming short of the net results in an icy plunge into the pool below. Or why not try to Mud Mile, a fitting obstacle given the name of the event: athletes plod through waist-deep mud, careful not to misstep at the risk of getting a mouthful of mud.

No, They’re Not Crazy!

You might be wondering why a person would voluntarily put himself or herself through such an event. The orange finisher headband provides bragging rights, but the real prize is that feel-good buzz that can only be earned by pushing yourself to your absolute limits, and then some. More than a million people have participated in Tough Mudder races (last year’s Whistler event drew 25,000 people to town), a testament every person’s internal glutton for punishment.

If you’re ready to prove yourself, head over to the Tough Mudder website to get signed up—spaces are limited, so act quickly! If you are not able to nab and entry, or you’re not quite convinced that Tough Mudder is up your alley, you can still join in on the Tough Mudder spirit: spectator tickets are available. Believe us when we say, it’s quite a show. Spectators will also get a chance to wander the grounds, which hosted Olympic events like biathlon and ski jumping in the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.

Stay at Summit

Whether you participate or simply watch the action, come join us at the Summit Lodge for an unforgettable Tough Mudder weekend. There’s no better place to rest your head (and body) after a demanding day. A soak in our hot tub and a quick sauna session will do wonders to restore sore muscles, and hey– why not book in a post-event massage to reward yourself for your hard work? Even tough muscles need a little TLC!

It’s Time to Swap Your Skis for Your Mountain Bike!

Mtn-biking-Whistler2

Whistler Village is looking a little different these days.

While you can still spot a few die-hard skiers and snowboarders meandering the Village Stroll in heavy boots and winter gear, you’re more likely to observe throngs of armor clad mountain bikers speckled with dirt, tough-looking bikes in tow. May 16th marked the official opening day of Whistler’s world-renown bike park, and the many local and visiting mountain biking enthusiasts couldn’t be happier.

Welcome to the Whistler Bike Park

The Whistler Bike Park is famous for its sheer size and for the variety of trails offered throughout the park: first-timers and seasoned pros alike (and everyone in between) will find plenty of options that are perfectly suited for them. The incredible terrain and views set the perfect stage for a day spent navigating through winding trails. You’ll be amazed at how different the mountain looks once the snow has melted: runs that you’ve skied a thousand times suddenly take on a new life when being conquered by bike.

Getting Started

It can be intimidating to tackle the Whistler Bike Park for the first time– that’s why we recommend enrolling in a few lessons with one of Whistler’s many qualified instructors. Check out the Whistler’s official Bike Park 101 program to get started. You’ll probably be surprised at just how tough it can be to navigate a bike downhill, but the thrill of the challenge combined with the spectacular coastal temperate rainforest scenery will undoubtedly leave you wanting more.

Like a Pro

For those who have already been bitten by the downhill mountain biking bug, we probably don’t need to do much work to convince you that Whistler is THE place to ride. Case in point: every August, Whistler hosts Crankworx, the infamous freeride mountain bike festival. If it’s good enough for the pros, chances are pretty good that you’ll have an unforgettable time playing the bike park.

The World of XC Mountain Biking

Mountain biking isn’t just limited to the downhill variety: equally as enthralling is cross country mountain biking, or “XC” biking. From Squamish to Whistler to Pemberton, the Sea to Sky region is chock-full of undulating paths and trails just begging to be explored by bike. Many trails are peppered with man-made features, making it a veritable playground in the woods.

The Wonderful World of WORCA

You can’t discuss cross country mountain biking in Whistler without talking about WORCA, the Whistler Off Road Cycling Association. For the past 25 years, WORCA has been an advocate for all things mountain biking in the Sea to Sky area. They also throw some of the best events in town.

The Toonie Rides are, without a doubt, WORCA’s most popular series: for a mere $2 (half of which goes towards WORCA’s trail maintenance, the other half dedicated to the winners’ prize purse), bikers with their own gear can join other XC enthusiasts on a pre-determined route, culminating in an apres session at a local watering hole. The Toonie Rides take place every Thursday. Fierce competitors and recreational riders alike are welcome to join in on the fun.

Crud 2 Mud

Mountain biking is celebrated throughout many events over the summer months. First up is “Crud 2 Mud”, an event that is all about bridging the ski and biking seasons. This Saturday (May 24th), competitors will descend Whistler Mountain on skis or a snowboard until the snow runs out. Then, they will swap their snow gear for a downhill mountain bike, and will continue to ride down the mountain right into the Village. There is no better way to celebrate the turn of the season!

Get Outside at GOFest, Whistler’s Great Outdoor Festival

Whistler-GOFest

Trying to decide what to do for the May long weekend?

If you’re a fan of the great outdoors, look no further than Whistler’s first annual GO Fest. From May 16th to 19th, the Great Outdoors Festival will be taking Whistler by storm. From a glow-in-the-dark run to the Slush Cup to film competitions to free live music, there is definitely no shortage of things to do. The festival’s tagline says it all: “the challenge starts with deciding what to do first”!

Now is the time grab your fellow outdoor-loving friends and start studying up on the schedule of events. We’ve done a little legwork for you to help you plot out your GO Fest Must Dos. Check it out:

For the Adventurous Athlete: The Great Snow-Earth-Water Race

Though this marks the first year of GO Fest, the Great Snow-Earth-Water Race is actually the revival of a popular team relay race from the 1980s. Groups of five to seven athletes will compete in a multi-stage race that encompasses some of Whistler’s greatest activities, from ski touring to mountain biking to paddling down the River of Golden Dreams.

For the Creative Competitor: The GoPro GOShow

Give a filmmaker a GoPro Hero 3+, and tell them to capture the essence of May in Whistler—that’s the idea behind this creative filmmaking competition. The GoPro GOShow will showcase the final productions, and will single out one filmmaker as the GoPro GOShow’s Champion, who will walk away $2,500 richer. Creative competitions always bring out the best talent in Whistler, so you won’t want to miss this event.

Summit-Lodge-Whistler-GOFest-Retro

For the Fun-Loving Family: The AlpenGlow Fun Run

Grab your bright clothes, slather on some neon paint, and gather the family (pets and strollers are allowed) for the AlpenGlow Fun Run. This all-inclusive race takes runners and walkers around Lost Lake, with tunes and entertainment throughout the route.

For the Film Buff: The WFF Adventure Film Series

Adventure films have a way of pulling the viewer right into the movie, leaving them feeling like they experienced the extreme sports in exotic locales for themselves. If you love watching ski and snowboard movies, be sure to check out at least a few of the 20 films being featured throughout the weekend at the Adventure Film Series. Topics range from sailing to extreme marathon running to rock climbing to surfing—and, of course, Whistler’s most popular sports: skiing, snowboarding and mountain biking.

For the Four-Season Skier: The Great Slush Cup

It’s like a pool party on the mountain: watch skiers and snowboarders attempt to glide across the huge slush pit without getting totally soaked. The competition takes place on Blackcomb Mountain is open to anyone up to the challenge. Don’t forget to abide by the dress code: think neon ski onesies from the 80s.

For the Musical Mountaineer: The Sheepdogs Concert

Do yourself a favour and head to the GO Fest mainstage to catch The Sheepdogs’ show on Friday night. If you like what you see (and hear), you’ll want to head back Saturday, Sunday and Monday evenings for more free concerts, featuring bands like the Boom Booms and She Stole My Beer.

 

PS: Looking for a place to stay for the weekend? We can help with that!

It’s a Dog’s Life at the Summit Lodge

Dog Friendly Whistler Hotel | Summit Lodge Hotel

At the Summit Lodge, pets are acknowledged as beloved family members. “Can you imagine traveling without your kids?” exclaims Lorraine Yeung of the Summit’s marketing department, echoing the sentiments of general manager Tony Medd.

Indeed, the entire staff welcomes dogs with arms wide open—literally. “Our front desk staff looooove dogs,” says Lorraine. “We love to come around the desk and greet them, give them some treats, and make sure they have a couple of dog amenities.” In fact, there are even dogs on staff—Lorraine’s dog, Talitha, our working Rottweiler, has been on the job since the ripe age of eight weeks.

Introducing the Summit Lodge’s Pet Package

At its very core, the Summit Lodge is about ensuring that guests have a positive experience. “We love to be able to do anything to make our guests have the best day ever,” says Lorraine. That’s why the hotel is so excited to unveil its new and improved pet package: they know that happy pets and happy guests go hand-in-hand.

While human guests can sample Aveda products and indulge in the treatments offered at the on-site Taman Sari Heritage Spa, there are plenty of opportunities to pamper pooches, too. “Gourmet pet baskets” greet pets and their owners as they enter their room for the first time, complete with a dog bed and blankets, healthy local-made dog treats, eco-friendly baggies and green-centric dog toys.

Exploring Dog-Friendly Whistler

Dog Friendly Whistler Hotel | Summit Lodge Hotel

Your puppy will have plenty to do while you relax in your room, but he or she will be equally excited to join you as you explore everything that Whistler has to offer. The Summit Lodge offers free bike rentals, and Lorraine advises guests to borrow a bike and take a leisurely ride through the Lost Lake Trails, dog leashed in tow. “Spend a little bit of time at Canine Cove or Barking Bay,” she insists, referring to a few of Whistler’s dog-friendly beaches. Pick up a few treats at Purebread and make a picnic of the day!

A simple walk along the Village Stroll can be fun, too. “Aside from all the exciting sights and smells, there are so many pet-friendly shops in Whistler. There is also lots of outdoor seating—you can’t bring your dog onto a patio, but you can tie your dog up just outside the patio.” That means enjoying an après-ski beverage while keep a close eye on your four-legged friend.

“In the summer especially, we can have so many dogs in the Village,” says Lorraine, “offering plenty of opportunities for socialization.” Her own pup enjoys mingling with other local and visiting dogs in the large grassy area in the Olympic Plaza.

Planning Your Pet-Friendly Trip

Dog Friendly Whistler Hotel | Summit Lodge Hotel

Of course, having lots of pets in town means that you’ll need to plan ahead to make sure your own dog is taken care of. “Not many properties allow pets to be left alone in a hotel room. Dog sitters and walkers can get booked up very quickly,” says Lorraine. “Do a little bit of Google-ing to find all of the pet-friendly places in Whistler.” The Summit staff can offer their own recommendations, too.

Keen on the idea of your pet joining you on your Whistler adventure? There are a few things you can do to prepare for your pooch. “When I travel with my dog, I bring some treats,” says Lorraine, highlighting that this is an especially good tactic if your pet tends to get anxious or overexcited. Treats will encourage your pet to associate traveling with positive experiences. “I might also bring them a blanket or toy, to make them feel at home and to provide a bit of familiarity,” advises Lorraine. “If your dog is crate-trained, a crate can make them feel really secure.”

Is That a… Tiger?

Dog Friendly Whistler Hotel | Summit Lodge Hotel

Unlike many other Whistler accommodations, the Summit Lodge does not limit the number of dogs or the size of dog permitted in the room. As long as you provide advance notice, the Summit will happily accommodate you and your pets on a dog-friendly floor—your canine will even receive a personalized shout-out on the in-house dog board by the front desk!

Other pets are welcome, too, as long as owners notify the hotel ahead of time in order to understand the policies in place. Hotel employees recalled the time a famous rapper brought a wild cat into the hotel (Small leopard? Mini tiger? The official breed was never confirmed).

Certified Dog-Approved

Dog Friendly Whistler Hotel | Summit Lodge Hotel

And what do the dogs think about the Summit Lodge experience? The proof is in the pudding: just as human guests make a point of returning to the Summit, so do their dogs. Lorraine tells me about one of her favourite regulars, a retriever named Bentley. She enjoys catching up with Bentley’s family and keeping up on their lives. “One of the best parts of our jobs is seeing these guests that keep coming back.”

To find out more about the Summit Lodge’s dog-friendly experience, check out the hotel’s pet policies and treat your dog to the ultimate Whistler experience!

Summer Events Round-up

Whistler is a mecca for all things active and because of this it attracts some of the most prestegous events the world has to offer. From extreme mountain biking competitions to massive yoga conventions, our little mountain town has it all. Here is the ultimate round-up of summer events coming to whistler in 2012.

Whistler Yoga Conference, May 4 – 6

Join in this journey to the majestic mountains, to the nurture of nature, and the timeless experience of yoga. The Whistler Yoga Conference provides teachers and yoga students of all levels with a supportive meeting place to grow and expand their practice through three days of inspirational learning. The weekend includes approximately 40 seminars, workshops and classes. More information and offers here.

Tough Mudder, June 23 – 24

Tough Mudder is a hardcore 10 to 12 mile obstacle course designed by British Special Forces to test your all around strength, stamina, mental grit, and camaraderie. Tough Mudder is more than an event; it’s a way of thinking. By running a Tough Mudder challenge, you’ll unlock a true sense of accomplishment, have a great time, and discover camaraderie with your fellow participants that’s experienced all too rarely these days. The race will be held at Whistler Olympic Park. For more information on entry fees and race details, please click here.

Whistler Children’s Art Festival, July 14 – 15

Mark your calendar for the 29th annual Whistler Children’s Art Festival. This fun-filled weekend features a multitude of hands-on art workshops led by professional artists in fine arts, crafts, theatre, multi-media, dance and music from across BC. The festival comes alive even further with free activities and entertainment by popular children’s performers, roving musicians and zany characters.

Kokanee Crankworx, Aug 10 – 19

In less than a decade, Kokanee Crankworx has become the authoritative free ride festival. A supercharged magnet for the world’s best riders and the definitive domestication of dirt in the service of epic endurance, supreme flow, monster air and gravity-fuelled mountain biking. Over ten fearless days in August, the venues at the Whistler Mountain Bike Park serve as a modern day Colosseum to the world’s best mountain bike athletes.

Whistler Wanderlust Yoga, Aug 23 – 26

Yoga and music phenomenon reaches new heights with the first-ever Canadian location for Wanderlust. Yogis from around the globe will be down-dogging, dancing, dining on organic delicacies, celebrating and joining together in an amazing community. With the world’s leading yoga teachers, top musical acts and DJs, renowned speakers, top chefs and winemakers, Wanderlust Whistler is an event not to be missed. Fostering relationships with local yoga rockstars, Wanderlust has invited lululemon athletica ambassadors to teach alongside its already amazing lineup inclusive of teachers Baron Baptiste and John Friend, musicians Michael Franti and Krishna Das, DJ set by Thievery Corporation, and performance artists Quixotic. For more information and for advance tickets, please visit here.

Are you coming to Whistler for any of these events? Give our friendly staff at Summit Lodge & Spa a call and find the best accommodation deals in town – 1 (888) 913.8811.