By Saturday night, Whistler was a sea of people and parties. Around 15,000 people gathered in Skiers’ Plaza to check out the World Skiing Invitational Big Air contest from perches on hotel balconies, bar patios and the sidelines of the mammoth jump. Fire dancers and a giant metal puppet controlled by about eight people were part of the animation.

Those of us on the GLC patio had a fantastic view of the big tricks on sticks.

It was a hard-fought battle and in the end Shinji Osada from Japan captured an emotional victory for the men, winning the grand prize of $10,000 and shedding a few tears in the process. Meanwhile, Roz Groenewoud grabbed the first place prize of $2,000 in the ladies’ category. Roz showed her inner warrior a last year’s Orage Masters, when she crashed, leaving behind a couple of garbage bags worth of bloody snow on the course and then continuing on to compete in the Big Air that night.

After all the pyrotechnics, random snowball fights and adrenaline of the Big Air, it was time to get our groove on at the first ever Kokanee Silent Disco, also at the GLC. Whistler marketing and design firm, Origin Design worked hard to pull off this successful and trendsetting event. I have a feeling this is only the beginning of Whistler’s silent disco movement.

Everyone received Skullcandy headphones and a special radio reciever with three channels to choose from. “Channel F” with Team Canada was my favourite. The dynamic duo spun tunes that had everyone singing and dancing with the same reckless abandon one would have dancing at home in their underpants or singing in the car.

It was pretty funny to have your own little world of music happening and then watch as others sang along to something completely different. When I took my headphones off, all I could here was tons of chatter, a few people singing off-key to Vanilla Ice, and a lot of laughter. There was a lot of “What channel are you on?” all night long, which meant for a bit of musical ADD – which kept things interesting. The overall vibe was upbeat and everyone was stoked to be part of something totally new and exciting.

Strangely enough, the term “silent disco” wasn’t enough of a hint for a few randoms, who complained that there wasn’t any music playing in the GLC. Apparently they didn’t get the memo. For the rest of us, it was the ultimate dance party with a twist and I can’t wait until the next silent disco!

Today, it’s off to the Orage Masters on Blackcomb Mountain, then over to Ozomatli for some feel-good music to end the day on a high note!


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