There’s nothing better than getting your New Year’s on at a mountain resort. Whatever you are feeling this NYE, ski resorts have got you covered, offering both free, family friendly events and swanky soirées.
“There is no better tradition,” says Matt Mosteller, marketing mogul at Resorts of the Canadian Rockies. “Mountain time provides huge benefits like social time, mountain air, spectacular scenery and, most importantly, that real time for connecting and playing together.”
New Year’s Eve at Rocky Mountain resorts include free family New Year’s Eve parties at Fernie’s main village square, Kimberley’s Plaza and Kicking Horse Plaza in Golden, as well as more upscale events at the resorts’ restaurants.
For decades, Banff’s ski areas have been holding big New Year’s events, and the tradition continues with the fourth-annual torchlight parade, which has become an iconic Canadian Rockies tradition. The procession heads down the summit of the North American Chair, which can be viewed in the town of Banff. Be in Banff by 7 pm on December 31 to see it. Or, if you’re feeling adventurous and want to ski in the parade, be up at Norquay mountain before
3:45 pm the day of the event. (You have to do a brief ski test with the patrols before they let you take part—otherwise, it’s free to participate.)
Lake Louise also has a torchlight parade that starts from its mid-mountain lodge and winds up at the daylodge, located at the base of the resort. This one is more formal, though: $76 gets you food and entertainment both before and after the parade. You can also just enjoy the dinner and a dance, without having to participate in the parade, for $66.
At Sunshine Village, New Year’s Eve activities revolve around its Sunshine Mountain Lodge, so only those staying in its accommodations can take part. Activities include a torchlight parade, a roaring fire pit, tobogganing and live music.
In Jasper, the biggest New Year’s bash takes place at the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge where you can have your choice of a five-course dinner and dance, which starts at $199 per person, or a buffet with family activities for $130 per person. There’s also the option to just attend the countdown celebrations at JPL’s Beauvert Dining Room at no cost, where there will be live music to mix and mingle your way into 2016.
Down at Castle Mountain Resort, there’s a free New Year’s bonfire and a pair of New Year’s parties to choose from: one is in the main lodge and the other in the cozy little T-Bar Pub. Both have a cover charge and feature live music and party treats.
There’s plenty to do in the mountains for New Year’s Eve. Now it’s just a matter of getting you and your family’s cranberry-and-gravy-soaked selves out there.