Deer Valley’s torchligh parade prolongs holiday celebrations | ParkRecord.com

Deer Valley’s torchligh parade prolongs holiday celebrations

The traditional idea for Deer Valley’s annual torchlight parade is to extend the holiday celebrations for the resort’s guests.

"We always hold it on Dec. 30, and it takes place on the Big Stick Ski Run, which is on Bald Eagle Mountain, right behind Snow Park Lodge," said Emily Summers, senior communications manager for Deer Valley Resort. "What we do to set this apart from other torchlight parades is that the Snow Park Restaurant will remain open during the event. It will serve its regular menu as well as complimentary hot cider and cookies on the plaza."

The cider and cookies will be served from 5:30 p.m. until 6 p.m. and the parade will start at dusk.

"There is a great two-level deck on the back of the lodge that will give onlookers a great viewpoint," Summers said.

The parade is choreographed and comprised of Deer Valley employees, mostly the resort’s ski instructors, according to Summers.

"We usually get between 50 to 100 employees who volunteer to ski," she said. "They come down Big Stick and do a finale show on Wide West, which is the beginner area right behind the lodge."

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This year, the parade will feature a bit of Deer Valley history.

"We used to have a synchronized ski team and in recent years, we have revived that," Summers said. "So, we’ll have our synchronized skiers make an appearance in the torchlight parade as well."

Since the parade is behind the Snow Park Lodge, there is ample parking, but Summers suggests early arrival.

"The hot cider and cookies are only served for 15 minutes, but people can make an evening out of it after a day of their own skiing," she said.

Summers has seen the parade four or five times.

"It’s different every year because it depends on who the volunteers are," she said. "The thing that remains the same is they all really get into it."

Like many of the area’s end-of-year activities, the Deer Valley torchlight parade has become a tradition for not only visitors, but for local residents and Deer Valley employees as well.

"We get a lot of return guests and we’re in the mode of celebrating during the season," Summers said. "So having an event that people can look forward to at this time is important for us."

Deer Valley Resort will present its annual torchlight parade on Big Stick at Bald Eagle Mountain behind the Snow Park Lodge on Wednesday, Dec. 30, at 6 p.m. The event will feature complimentary hot cider and cookies at the Snow Park Plaza from 5:45 p.m. until 6 p.m. Admission is free and open to the public. For more information, visit http://www.deervalley.com.