Record editorial: Strap in once again for the Deer Valley FIS freestyle World Cup |

Record editorial: Strap in once again for the Deer Valley FIS freestyle World Cup

It’s one of the premier events held on the “Greatest Snow on Earth.”

On Thursday, thousands of Parkites and visitors will convene at the base of Deer Valley Resort’s Champion run for the opening night of the annual FIS freestyle World Cup. Over the course of three nights, spectators will be treated to a one-of-a-kind spectacle: the best moguls and aerial skiers in the world dashing down the mountain, twirling through the air and one-upping one another in pursuit of the podium.

For many Parkites, it’s the highlight of the winter. And while the outcomes of the competitions matter — World Cup medals are at stake, after all, and it’s exhilarating when a hometown athlete wins one — they are less important to most spectators than the overall experience. There’s something undeniably special about gathering under the lights amid a festive atmosphere, hot chocolate in hand, and watching world-class athletes do their thing.

In some ways, the World Cup, which has been held at Deer Valley for more than two decades, serves as a de facto community celebration, one that winter sports enthusiasts and neophytes alike can enjoy. It’s a chance to take a breath after the Sundance Film Festival and to mark the midpoint of winter. And it’s another reminder of why Park City a special place to live: Few other communities have the privilege of hosting an event like this each year.

Best of all? All three evenings of competition are free for spectators (though people inclined to do so can earn their admission by hiking up to the base of Champion run). Given that, there’s little reason for Parkites not to lace up their warmest pair of boots, throw on a heavy coat and make the trip to Deer Valley for at least one of the competitions, if not all three of them.

Those who do will be happy they did. We’ll see them there, under the lights. And when it’s all over, we’ll begin counting down the days until the World Cup comes back into town next year.

More information about the World Cup is available at

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