This Sunday, April 3, the Longhorn Saloon patio will play host to a different kind of party.
Starting at 7 p.m., 24 of the top skiers and snowboarders in Whistler will be challenging each other to a rail jam, dropping from scaffolding onto a flat-down rail donated by Whistler Summer Snowboard Camp. A panel of local judges will pick the overall winners after the event, as well as present a trip for two to Las Vegas for the skier or snowboarder that lands the sickest trick.
Snow is not an obstacle. With the help of Whistler-Blackcomb, several tonnes of snow will be brought to the site for the landing area and on-ramp.
According to Longhorn assistant manager Bryan Vermeeren, they came up with the idea to host the Longhorn Locals Rail Jam when winter was at its lowest point.
"Basically it was early in the year when there was no snow and locals were down and talking about moving to other places. We looked around and realized that the patio is pretty huge and could easily hold a rail jam. We wanted to do something for locals, put on a bit of a show," said Vermeeren.
The idea snowballed from there, with sponsors like Jim Beam and Red Bull signing on, and pros coming forward to help organize the contest.
The event is invite-only, and a few of the athletes were still being confirmed at press time.
In total there will be $4,000 in cash and prizes up for grabs, but mostly the athletes are coming "out to have some fun and jam together on a really awesome rail," said Vermeeren.
"This is the first annual, but were planning to make it a regular thing for us. The way it came together was just incredible."