Inevitably, by now, the snow season is over for most of us. As lift chairs swing idly in the breeze and the spring sun turns the snow into runoffs for rivers and streams, we shed a tear over the fact that winter is officially over. Of course, Mt Hood will remain strong and the southern hemispheres are gearing up for their winter months, but for a majority of us, the 2013-14’ season has passed and recreationalists everywhere are planning their summer festivities. As sad as the closing day of any resort can be, the celebrations are raucous and the spirits are high. As with any celebratory occasion, one can expect a certain amount of shenanigans to take place, and we’ve whittled it down to several you can expect on any given closing day.
Have you noticed that people will use any excuse to dress in costume? The closing day at a resort is no exception to this rule; in fact, it’s almost mandatory, and people take full advantage of this opportunity. Every year, you have that one girl – or groups of girls – who use this time as an opportunity to show off their bikini-clad bodies, sporting tube socks, riding brand new or super old (and we don’t mean vintage) snowboards/skis, and adorned in Hawaiian leis. The guys sit around gawking, while the lady shredders roll their eyes and eagerly await the ice rash that will inevitably ensue (hey, we’re not judging, just telling it how it is). There are a few guys who don’t shy away from showing off some skin as well – from short shorts bearing their hairy thighs, to banana hammocks that should never be worn, even on the most brazen European beaches. Retro themes and neon colors never seem to grow old. Be honest, you know that deep down you have anxiously waited all season long to bust out that onesie powder suit, with its slim fit that can’t even fit over a snowboard boot and its bulbous upper torso zip top. Oh and don’t forget your Sims Kidwell Round Tail Pro-Model board to match. Boy, the 80s were such a revolutionary and progressive time in snowboarding.
Lots of inebriated folks:
Is anyone surprised? As much as people love dressing up, they love even more to numb all humiliation that may manifest itself on closing day with alcoholic beverages and/or other illicit substances. How else are those guys brave enough to wear those itsy, bitsy polka dot man thongs? Through liquid courage, that’s how! Last day just wouldn’t look the same if PBR wasn’t the general unspoken sponsor of the crowd. And everyone loves the awkward guy trolling around the lodge and/or parking lots mumbling incomprehensible utterances and invading personal bubbles, whilst in pursuit for more PBR. Sometimes uncontrolled inebriation can lead to our next closing day expectation…
A fight or two:
Let’s be real, some people just can’t handle their booze, and the smallest thing can set them off. Case in point: a guy gets cut off at the bar and as he’s escorted out of the lodge, and in a last-ditch drunken effort thinks it is a good idea to head-butt the HR manager of the resort in the face, only to be laid out by said manager and leave the mountain in handcuffs. As ridiculous as the situation may be, it sure provides enough entertainment to last throughout the day. When around these types, watch your face.
A celebrity appearance:
Okay, depending on where you’re from and what mountain you shred, this may be a common, run-of-the-mill occurrence, but for some of us, it is few and far in-between. People respond differently to celebrity sightings and the level of fame alters these responses. Legendary pro-snowboarders and skiers in the snow world can sometimes equate the level of excitement as seeing the President of the United States, perhaps even more. The bold ones will go ask for autographs and/or photos, while the less conspicuous will perhaps take a selfie with said famed individual in the background, as they lurk hard on them around the mountain. For some reason, just being in the same proximity and seeing the person(s) can automatically provide street cred. This Snow Bunny once saw Bill Cosby in the SLC airport and felt my street cred rise exponentially, despite the fact that no one even talks about Bill Cosby anymore. Bill just gets me, you know?
Lastly, but certainly not in the least of what you can expect on a closing day are…
Rad times and memories:
Closing day is the culmination of the season. It brings the whole crew together for one last day where everyone shreds together at the same time. It is a time to laugh and reminisce about the highlights of the season, and gripe about the crappy days. It is a time to take those sunny, slushy park laps that are customary on closing days. It is a time to remember why we do what we do, and why we are in love with it! The snow community has a special bond, shared with hundreds of thousands all over the world. We all understand the pain of missing out on a pow day, finding that perfect line or stomping that trick we’ve been working on. We understand how devastating an injury can be. We know how our sport brings risks that can take the lives of those we love. Within all this, we have community. We have friends for life and people who inspire us daily to go bigger and be better.
As bittersweet and silly closing days can be, for most of us, it brings out the best of the sport. Closing days are about fun; not about showing off, contests or “getting the shot”, it is just about being with your friends, doing what you love, and that is what it is truly all about!