Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Medals Come Home to Vail

Even before she had Olympic gold around her neck, Lindsey Vonn landed on the cover of Sports Illustrated and among the pages of its swimsuit issue. Only a couple weeks later she captured Olympic gold and bronze in Vancouver in the downhill and super-G. By early March, she had another World Cup title, her third, and was busy making the rounds among the media and ski circuits. But now after a whirlwind winter, she's returning home to Vail, where she's spent countless hours training on the race course at Golden Peak and where she resides with her husband, Thomas, in the Arrabelle. And Vail is having a celebration for her.

You'd think I'd be excited about the rising temperatures around home and put skiing on the back burner until next season. But no, I'm still wishing I was out making turns, working on my goggle tan, taking advantage of the fresh powder that's continuing to fall in the mountains (Lake Tahoe's calling for snow tonight!) and simply breathing in that mountain air. And more importantly, I'm wishing I was in Vail to take part in Lindsey Vonn's homecoming celebration. The homecoming kicks off at 3:30 p.m., local time, at Vail Square in Lionshead, and has fun planned for everyone. Those in attendance will receive commemorative pins and memorabilia, and can listen to presentations by Co-President of Vail Resorts' Mountain Division John Garnsey, Ski & Snowboard Club Vail Executive Director Aldo Radamus, Town of Vail Mayor Dick Cleveland and former Olympian Chad Fleischer. If that wasn't enough to lure you in--come on, how could you pass up standing in the same square as an Olympian and a gold medalist at that--what about free food? Enjoy hot chocolate and cookies as well as entertainment during the event.

Those skiing and riding at Vail tomorrow also have the chance to change their 2010-2011 ski season for good. If you ride one of the "Welcome Home Lindsey" cars on the Eagle Bahn Gondola which loads from the Lionshead base, you can enter a drawing to win one of five Epic 7-Pack Passes. That's a seven-day unrestricted pass that you can use at any of the Vail Resorts and Arapahoe Basin available to purchase for $449 and you could score. Not bad, not bad. Check out more details about the event at Vail's website.

And stay tuned for more celebrations of Vail's 2010 Olympians at Spring Back to Vail on April 17. Catch four-time Olympian Sarah Schleper, Olympian Chris Del Bosco and Paralympian Ralph Green between the free concert performances by Robert Earl Keen and Wyclef Jean. Ah so much fun planned before the snow melts and even more reason to plan one last trip out there. If only that was a possibility for me--this skier's season unfortunately seems to be done, but not without a boatload of memories.

Photo grabbed from Lindsey's Facebook fan page.

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