2011-03-02 - Afterdark Invitational This Weekend
Image: The Islander Afterdark attracts a huge crowd to witness huge air.
Photo Credit: James Watson
When the sun sets on Mount Washington this Saturday night, the spotlights will break through the darkness and point directly at some of Canada’s hottest skiers and snowboarders. The mountain’s preeminent winter event, the VIB Islander Afterdark Invitational, is back for it’s eighth annual and promises an aerial assault on the Island.
“We have all the snow we need to build some impressive features for the event this year,” explains Event Coordinator Leah Knutson. “The plan right now is to bring back the enormous Showtime Booter, plus we will be adding an additional quarter pipe for riders to session at the end of the event site.”
The VIB beer garden opens at 7:00 pm and the show starts 30 minutes later on Saturday, March 5th in front of the Alpine Lodge. The Afterdark features an invite-only list of newschool riders from the Island, Lower Mainland, Quebec, and Whistler who will be busting out monster airs under the lights for a $3000 prize purse.
The Islander Afterdark is a homecoming event for many of the riders. “I've spent most of my life at Mount Washington and it's where my passion for skiing started,” says Ian Paone, who is originally from Victoria and now calls Whistler home. “Going huge with your friends in front of your home mountain crowd...it's addictive!”
The Afterdark Invitational is a rarity in the world of snow. Both skiers and snowboarders compete together on the same jump, on the same night in a jam session format. Competitors have the largest say in who takes home top prize so even though the vibe is generally chill, the cash purse keeps things a bit edgy and competitive.
In the last two years, Liberty rider Carl Fortin has taken home the largest cash haul with impressive performances that wowed the crowds and fellow athletes. “There will be nothing better than dethroning Carl in front of my hometown crowd,” jokes Paone.
The night is capped off with the Naked DJ's spinning on the wheels of steel and Canadian indie artists Kings Without take their blend of roots, rock, and reggae to the stage for the VIB Afterdark Party in Fat Teddy's Bar and Grill.
The Islander Afterdark Invitational is supported by Vancouver Island Brewery, The North Face, Dakine, and 91.3 The Zone.
For more information on the Islander Afterdark Invitational and other Mount Washington events this winter, go to mountwashington.ca.
Mount Washington Alpine Resort is located 30 minutes above the Comox Valley on Vancouver Island. WestJet, Central Mountain Air, Pacific Coastal Airlines, and Island Express service the Comox Valley Airport (YQQ). To find out about accommodation and package information, call Mount Washington Alpine Resort at 1-888-231-1499 toll free or locally at 250-338-1386. Surf to www.mountwashington.ca for additional information including our live snow cam.
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Afterdark Invitational This Weekend