Avanti and New Belgium have partnered to create the Ski & Snowboard Club. This ski season has mostly been test runs but the two hope to get the club running next ski season. (Provided by New Belgium)
It’s a question that haunts every skier and snowboarder: Would you rather sit in I-70 ski traffic, or would you rather do literally anything else — such as, say, drink a beer?
Soon, you might not have to choose.
Avanti and New Belgium have partnered to create the Ski & Snowboard Club, which enables riders to meet up at the food hall, get shuttled to a ski area, enjoy the slopes and après-ski while heading home on the “party” bus.
“Traffic is so brutal,” said Patrick O’Neill, co-owner of Avanti. “What better way to deal with traffic than having a couple beers in the back of a bus?”
Avanti and New Belgium have been testing the waters this season, sending a bus to Loveland in February. This Friday, a sold-out bus will be taking a group to Copper Mountain for A Day For Jake in honor of the late snowboarding legend Jake Burton. Another bus will ride in April. (The details for the upcoming trip haven’t been set, so look for updates on both Avanti and New Belgium’s social media accounts.)
The new bus trips are a natural fit for Avanti, O’Neill said
“We’ve seen so much of people coming in with their ski gear, showing up at 5 o’clock on a Saturday and having some beers,” O’Neill said. “It’s their own version of après-ski.”
Next ski season, the Ski & Snowboard Club’s goal is to run buses twice a month, said Will Frazier with New Belgium. The two businesses are still looking at the best way to run the program, whether it’s offering season passes or one-off tickets. The club is open to partnering with any mountain.
As of now, riders looking at the upcoming April bus shouldn’t be too worried about their wallets. Both O’Neill and Frazier said the goal wasn’t to make lots of money off the club. That explains why Friday’s bus tickets, which include a lift ticket, beer, lunch and the party bus, come in at $10. Riders could have also grabbed a hoodie for an extra $20.
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