April 12, 2019: Whistler, B.C. – With snow still on the mountaintops and warmer temperatures in the valley, Whistler’s Great Outdoors Festival, GO Fest is the perfect opportunity to celebrate the convergence of the seasons. The sixth annual festival showcases many of the fantastic outdoor activities that anyone can come and try out. Everything from stand-up paddleboarding, canoeing the River of Golden Dreams, daily yoga, the Whistler Parkrun, sailing and tennis clinics, to axe throwing.
Corb Lund launches the GO Fest free concert series with a show on Friday, May 17. Saturday and Sunday has performances from Jesse Roper, Said the Whale, Tonye Aganaba, Buckman Coe, and Lazy Syrup Orchestra. The opening acts will play at 3 p.m. and the headliners at 7:30 p.m. at Village Square.
“Over the last six years, GO Fest has really emphasized all that the resort has to offer in May,” said Whistler Mayor Jack Crompton. “The festival is a perfect opportunity to come and experience an outdoor concert, try a new sport, catch a movie at the Adventure Film Series or drop into a quick workshop. Thank you to the Province of British Columbia for making this festival possible through Municipal and Regional District Tax funding.”
The range of outdoor activities on offer during GO Fest suits all ages and abilities, and includes the Whistler Parkrun, the VANS skate ramp, tennis clinics with Whistler Tennis Academy, a road cycling group ride with Whistler Cycling Club, Whistler Museum Valley of Dreams Walking Tours, beach volleyball with Whistler Outdoor Volleyball Association, stand-up paddleboarding and canoeing with Backroads Whistler, the GO Green Nature Scavenger Hunt and much more.
GO Fest’s creative offerings includes a digital camera photography workshop with Jeff Boyce, DJ lessons with Vancouver’s Premier DJ School Table Tutors, the Adventure Film Series, and workshops at The GO Fest Haven located in Whistler Olympic Plaza.
GO Fest Main Stage at Village Square Concert Schedule
Friday, May 17
7:30 p.m. Corb Lund
Saturday, May 18
3 p.m. Jesse Roper
7:30 p.m. Said the Whale
Sunday, May 19
3 p.m. Tonye Aganaba
3:40 p.m. Buckman Coe
7:30 p.m. Lazy Syrup Orchestra
JUNO-winning Corb Lund kicks off the weekend performances at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 17. The alt-country singer-songwriter from Alberta has three Gold-certified albums and has won a host of awards including Canadian Country Music Awards’ Roots Artist of the Year eight times. His albums include Things That Can’t Be Undone, Counterfeit Blues and Cabin Fever.
Blues rock singer-songwriter Jesse Roper performs at 3 p.m. on Saturday, May 18. The B.C.-born artist is known for explosive live performances. His most recent album is Access To Infinity.
JUNO-winning trio Said The Whale bring their rich West Coast harmonies to the stage at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 18. Their music draws from California pop and Pacific Northwest indie rock, and their lyrics are inspired by Vancouver’s water and mountains. Their sixth album, Cascadia, was released earlier this year.
Sunday afternoon will kick off at 3 p.m. with soulful R&B and rootsy sounds from Buckman Coe supported by harmonies from Tonye Aganaba. Buckman Coe sings of the issues of the day and delivers messages of social justice, humanity and love. His latest release is Gathering Storm. Tonye Aganaba is a social justice advocate and Much More Music Video Award recipient. Her music is a mix of soul, neo-folk and hip-hop.
Lazy Syrup Orchestra headline on Sunday at 7:30 p.m. Their music blends mellow morning vibes, MCing and live instruments with eclectic dance music from around the world. The performers are Dunks (from The Funk Hunters), Thomas Workshop (The Soul Hop Committee) and members of live bands Love You Miss You and Wooden Horsemen.
GO Fest is produced by the Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW). The festival offers activities throughout Whistler. Whistler Olympic Plaza and Village Square will be the GO Fest bases: with music, street entertainment, workshops, food trucks and more.
The RMOW works with the Association of Whistler Area Residents for the Environment (AWARE) before, during and after GO Fest to minimize waste during the festival. AWARE runs a Zero Waste Station at Whistler Olympic Plaza to divert waste and help people to recycle correctly; they diverted 82 per cent of the event waste at GO Fest last year.
Stay up to date on this year’s GO Fest, Whistler Great Outdoors Festival, by visiting greatoutdoorsfest.com or following facebook.com/greatoutdoorsfest, @GOFestWhistler on Instagram and @GOFestWhistler on Twitter.
Media Notes: Additional photography or promotional materials from the musical lineup for any of the artists performing at GO Fest, Whistler’s Great Outdoors Festival, are available upon request.
Social Tags: @GOFestWhistler, @RMWhistler
The recent sunny weather has been gorgeous for heading into the backcountry on skis, a snowboard or sled for springtime lines, outstanding views, and end-of-day hangouts catching the final rays with your friends. But, as we all know, the backcountry needs to be treated with respect. We caught up with Joelle Tiessen, Marketing Director of Mountain Skills Academy & Adventures (MSAA), for guidance on how to safely make the most of springtime in the backcountry.
What steps do you recommend beginners take before heading into the backcountry to ski, snowboard or sled?
Tiessen: Before anyone heads into the backcountry, the first step is always to take a Level 1 Avalanche Skills Training (AST 1) course. This course makes you aware of the dangers of travelling in uncontrolled terrain and beyond the ski patrol resort boundaries. [In resorts patrollers manage the terrain and are also available for rescue. “Uncontrolled terrain” isn’t managed to reduce the risk of avalanche or other hazards such as crevasses, and rescue may not be possible—Editor.] If you are planning to go into the backcountry you want to always carry a transceiver, probe and shovel. The AST 1 course teaches you how to use these tools in an avalanche rescue situation and how to stay out of avalanche trouble spots so hopefully you never need to use those skills.
What would you recommend somebody brings in their bag on a backcountry trip? AdventureSmart recommends these 10 items (a flashlight, fire-making kit, signaling device, extra food and water, extra clothing, navigation/communication aids, first aid kid, emergency shelter, pocket knife and sun protection), but do you have any further tips?
Tiessen: One item that we would add to this list is a repair kit for your gear. You don’t want to have a binding or pole or other key item break while you are way out in the backcountry. If something does break, having spare parts, duct tape, ski straps and a multi-tool can come in very handy and make the difference between getting back before dark or spending a long night out.
Is avalanche.ca the best website to check on conditions? Or do you know of other resources?
Tiessen: For the Sea to Sky area, avalanche.ca is the best resource for avalanche conditions. It’s also good to get in habit of browsing a Facebook group like South Coast Touring to read about individual experiences in specific locations. Another source for a little geeking out is the Wayne Flann Avalanche Blog. There are many more, but find your favourites and keep current on local conditions throughout the season.
The backcountry is a pretty intimidating place, do you recommend any ways for newer adventurers to get ongoing guidance and mentorship?
Tiessen: There are several local groups who meet up casually (like South Coast Touring on Facebook) and welcome new tourers (who have taken AST1), there are also mentor groups like Mountain Mentors for women. Hiring a local ski guide for a day is a great way to get into new terrain and learn tips to make your touring experiences better and safer. Many local shops also offer clinics for free or a minimal fee on certain dates throughout the season. And if you like to geek out a little, our local bookstore [Armchair Books. You can also try Whistler Public Library.] has titles on avalanche topics and there is also YouTube for mini instructional videos to keep your skills fresh. If you are very new and not sure you’re ready to commit to all the gear and training, just take an Intro to Backcountry guided tour where you can get a taste and see if touring is for you.
What should experienced backcountry adventurers do to keep their skills fresh? I’ve heard it’s important to take an annual avalanche safety refresher course.
Tiessen: It is good to practice your avalanche training skills regularly, especially at the beginning of each season. You can do this with your touring friends or take a one-day refresher course with a professional guide to continue learning. There are also options to build more advanced rescue skills by taking a Companion Rescue Skills clinic or going even farther and taking the Level 2 Avalanche Skills Training course. There is a snow field up on Blackcomb Mountain near the Rendezvous where patrollers bury transceivers to practice searching, and members of the public are welcome to practice there as well.
If someone is vacationing in Whistler, is there a way for them to safely experience this area’s backcountry without owning all the equipment?
Tiessen: The best and safest way for visitors to get into the backcountry is to go with a local guide who can show them around terrain appropriate to their skill level. There are a couple of local businesses that specialize in renting all the touring gear you need from skis, skins, splitboards, transceivers, probes and shovels and even avalanche airbags. MSAA’s tours do not include rental gear but we partner up with Escape Route Alpine Demo Centre and they offer our guests a 20 per cent discount on most rental gear. [Excess Backcountry is another option—Editor.]
Whether you’re a dedicated yogi, or looking to ease aches acquired in this area’s famous mountains (perhaps from skiing, snowboarding, tobogganing, snowshoeing, Nordic skiing, snowmobiling, skating, fat-tire biking, or dogsledding—have I forgotten something?). It’s nice to come in from the cold and reset with stretches, some quiet, and perhaps even get a little sweat on. Here’s a sample of what Whistler has to offer:
For yoga right in Whistler Village
Yogacara is the place to go. This popular studio is at Sundial Crescent, right in the heart of Whistler Village. Make sure you sign up in advance because classes are small and they sell out. The classes include energetic Vinyasa, classic Hatha, ab and back-strengthening Hatha Core, Gentle Hatha, dynamic Flow, soothing Restorative and slow-paced Yin for a deep stretch.
For warming up on a chilly day
Neo Whistler, part of the YYoga chain familiar to Vancouverites, offers YHot yoga: a series of slow postures at a balmy 40 degrees. The light-filled Neo Whistler studio at Function Junction has a unique selection of classes: heart-rate raising Power and Power Intermediate, dynamic Flow, Core Fusion that brings together Pilates, yoga and fitness, and Escents Aromatherapy Yin, a slow-paced class to the scent of essential oils.
For a gym atmosphere
Whistler Core gym at 4010 Whistler Way in the Village has fitness-based Flow Yoga. The class moves quickly and fluidly between poses in the Vinyasa style, so prepare to raise your heart rate.
For a slower pace, head north of the Village to Meadow Park Sports Centre’s Stretch and Restore Yoga. This gentle evening class is a great way to unwind after an active day.
For cultural types
The Audain Art Museum blends art and yoga at their Art After Dark yoga classes. The classes are free with admission, but make sure you sign up in advance because the classes are popular.
For water lovers
Not all yoga classes take place indoors: SUP Yoga (or stand up paddleboard yoga) is a yoga class, on a paddle board, outdoors on a lake. Since staying out of the water requires some balance, yoga on a paddle board really targets the stability muscles and the core, making this both an unusual and a challenging class. Both Whistler Eco Tours and Backroads Whistler have SUP Yoga in the summer months. Keep an eye on their websites to find out when the classes kick off.
For 18 to 35 year olds
LUNA has yoga on Thursday evenings at the LUNA Lounge in the lower level of the Maury Young Arts Centre in the Village. The classes are only $3, or free for LUNA members, and they are run by a group that provides fun, alcohol-free nightlife events for 18 to 35 year olds, hence their name: Late and Unique Nighttime Alternatives (LUNA).
For pregnancy-friendly yoga
Prenatal yoga is a wonderful way to help a growing, transforming (and often aching) body work with the changes of pregnancy. Meadow Park Sports Centre’s class is holistic: it includes gentle flow with Pilates-based exercises and yoga postures that build strength and flexibility. The prenatal yoga class is led by a specialized instructor and designed for women between 12 and 40 weeks of pregnancy. The classes are a several-week program and require your doctor or midwife’s approval to participate.
For an enormous yoga festival
Wanderlust Whistler is a multi-day yoga festival filled with workshops from renowned teachers, meditations, speakers, sound baths, hikes, speakeasies, slacklining, fantastic food, dancing and music (Broken Social Scene, Nahko and Medicine for the People are playing free outdoor concerts this weekend). This year Wanderlust runs from Thursday, August 1 to Sunday, August 4.
For yoga during GO Fest
Make sure you join the free GO Fest yoga workshops at Whistler Olympic Plaza. Details of the GO Fest schedule over May 17 to 20 will go live in the coming weeks.
Did you swing by the AWARE Zero Waste Station at GO Fest this year? If so, perhaps you were struck by the thought: “Zero waste? With thousands of people?!”
But nothing makes a person check exactly which recycling bin their organic salad container goes in quite like a cheerful Zero Waste Hero’s supervision (see above). And a little education never goes awry: did you know Whistler introduced flexible plastic package recycling this summer? To date, AWARE has diverted more than 90 per cent of waste at 135 events. These events include GO Fest, Canada Day, Whistler Farmers Market, the Whistler Village Beer Festival and RBC GranFondo Whistler.
So how does an event achieve zero waste? Does it mean nobody’s salad container goes in landfill? Yep. Does it mean banning needlessly wasteful contraptions like single-use coffee cups? Not exactly, but they’re designed out of the event.
“Whistler has had a goal of becoming a zero waste community for over a decade. The Zero Waste International Alliance defines Zero Waste as 90 per cent diversion from landfills and incinerators. While diverting 90 per cent of waste is a significant accomplishment, the Zero Waste Heroes Program aims to get as close to 100 per cent as possible,” said Stephanie Redmond, the projects coordinator at AWARE. Then she forwards the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District’s definition:
“Zero Waste is a ‘whole systems’ approach that considers the flow of products and materials from the first stages of product and process design, through resource extraction, manufacturing, consumption and disposal. Waste is seen as more than just garbage—it is seen as a valuable resource. Given this broader perspective, the Zero Waste approach aims to minimize the consumption of materials at the beginning of the product ‘lifecycle,’ in order to reduce the environmental impact of the product at the later stages.”
We asked AWARE what inspired the goal of zero waste at events?
“There is a growing recognition of the impact our stuff has: the images of plastic in the oceans, the impacts on wildlife and the growing number of communities developing zero waste strategies highlights the understanding that when we throw something away there is actually no such place as ‘away’. Also people recognize that just because an item can be recycled it doesn’t mean that a) it is successfully and b) it is the highest and best use of that material. For us, the focus is on how to build on this growing AWAREness and connect people with the solutions and actions we can all take in our homes, workplaces and lifestyles,” said Claire Ruddy, executive director of AWARE.
Finally, what steps can everyone take that warm your Zero Waste Hero hearts?
Reduce, reduce, reduce, reduce and take pride in it.
• Reduce energy: turn up the chunky sweaters and turn down the heat.
• Reduce waste: avoid single-use items. Drink your coffee out of a reusable or an old-fashioned mug—we swear it tastes better. Carry your own water bottle. If you like straws, get nice reusable ones (FYI: most come with a little scrubbing brush so the insides stay impeccably clean). Own great glass lunch containers—bonus, did you know most are oven safe? Support the incredible local produce in this area at the summer farmers markets, and bring reusable cloth bags to put your produce in at the grocery store.
• Reduce water waste: set a two-minute timer when you shower or compete with the folks you live with to find who can shower fastest—while still covering all bases on hygiene.
• Reduce fuel use: download some podcasts and take transit. In spring, summer and fall, when possible, travel by bike on Whistler’s stunning Valley Trail.
• Reduce consumption: reduce what you buy new by choosing quality items you only need to purchase once, then repair what you have. Also, avoid plastic since every piece of plastic created still exists today.
Visit AWAREwhistler.org for details of upcoming AWARE events.
Looking forward to an action-packed May long weekend with the family? GO Fest is teeming with activities to keep the good times rolling for, well, all the team. Check out the below itinerary, or visit this schedule for the full range of activities, to make the most of every day together.
Friday, May 18
Tour Whistler’s Village Stroll and take in the outstanding array of Street Entertainment on offer throughout the weekend. You’ll find live music, art, crafts and quirky characters in costume. The Street Entertainment runs from 12:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Friday, as well as noon to 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
Saturday, May 19
Packed your runners? Start Saturday with a dose of fresh air on the five-kilometer Whistler Parkrun along Lost Lake Park’s wide gravel trails. The run is an inclusive, bring-everyone, move-at-your-own-speed activity. Children under 11 must be accompanied by an adult. Babies are welcome in their strollers, but bring your big-wheeled running stroller because the course is gravelly. Fido must be on a short leash and there is a limit of one dog per runner. The run starts at the Lost Lake Passivhaus (which—whew—serves coffee, smoothies, and food) just a short walk from Whistler Village. (Cost: free. Arrive at 8:50 a.m. for a 9 a.m. start and register online in advance.)
Next up for all nature lovers is Make Your Own Birdhouse from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Whistler Olympic Plaza. Gift a backyard home to the many North American birds who select birdhouses to nest in. (Cost: $15. Sign up on site. Birdhouse builders under the age of 12 must be accompanied by an adult.)
Have a little skateboarder? Or an aspiring skater? The Vans Mini Skate Ramp is at the Whistler Olympic Plaza Pavilion from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. on both Saturday, May 19 and Sunday, May 20 (Cost: free. Ages 10 and older. Bring your own helmet.)
A second board sport is also on offer: snowboarding for kids ages three to six. Try the Showcase Burton Riglet Snowboard Park at Whistler Olympic Plaza from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. A few years ago the littlest children typically started winter sports on skis, but these tiny snowboards are designed for the youngest participants.
Explore Whistler’s unique natural spaces at the GO Green Nature Scavenger Hunt from 1 to 4 p.m. at Florence Petersen Park (beside the Whistler Public Library). The hunt is guided by adventure leaders who teach fun information about the importance of biodiversity, forests, waterways and wildlife. (Cost: free.)
Sunday, May 20
Grow your own sunflower and learn about sustainable gardening at Dig, Sow, GROW! at the AWARE tent at Whistler Olympic Plaza from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Gardening tools, organic soil, compostable cups and seeds are provided. (Cost: free.)
Do your littles keep their eyes peeled for fire engines? Police cars? Is garbage day—with the garbage truck—the highlight of their week? Up to 100 shiny vintage British cars will be in Creekside Village from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. for the All British Car Show. (Cost: free.)
Bike, walk or drive (but driving means you don’t get to enjoy Whistler’s Valley Trail) to The Point Artist-Run Centre for an afternoon of activities from noon to 4 p.m. There will be bocce and brunch, live music, indoor and outdoor activities, and a Musical Instrument Swap and Jam Session.
Not been to The Point before? It’s a magical location that is now a creative hub for the community, with a series of historic buildings, a lawn down to the lake, and docks where Whistler Sailing Association launches boats. (Cost: free. Bring a musical instrument if you want to join the swap. Click here if you need directions to The Point, 5678 Alta Lake Road.)
Monday, May 21
Swing by the GO Fest Haven tent at Whistler Olympic Plaza for the Discover Nature with Whistler Museum workshop from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Discover Nature is a public education program that includes touch tables with a range of Whistler’s nature hosted by nature interpreters. All ages are welcome. (Cost: free.)
Then afterwards head back to the Village Stroll to take in more Street Entertainment from noon until 6:30 p.m.
Got GO Fest plans with your guy group, but feeling awed by the looong list of Long Weekend activities? No worries. We’ve gone through the list and sorted the best, from the frankly also-awesome rest.
Thursday, May 17
Keen to get a head start on the weekend and a lot of cardio? Join the Retro WORCA Toonie Race. The cross-country mountain bike ride starts at 6:30 p.m. Remember to raid your dad’s basement in advance because the ride has a dress code: a retro bike and outfit. The race is part of Whistler Mountain Bike Heritage Week presented by the Whistler Museum and sign in at Arbutus Routes, unit 112, 4557 Blackcomb Way. (Cost: $2 for WORCA members (membership is $60 for adults, $25 for youth, and $15 for children aged 12 and under. Buy your membership online and sign the waiver online too).
Friday, May 18
Begin your Friday night with the Story of Whistler’s Alpine Mountain Bike Trails at Whistler Museum, 4333 Main Street. Trail builder Dan Raymond and WORCA’s Director of Planning Todd Hellinga will tell the history of Whistler’s trails and describe the building of the hotly anticipated (and charismatically monikered) Lord of the Squirrels trail. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the talk begins at 7 p.m. (Cost: entry by donation to WORCA trail maintenance.)
Continue your evening with two surf documentaries as part of the Whistler Film Festival Adventure Film Series. Transition will be screened at 9 p.m. at the Maury Young Arts Centre. The story follows surfer Noah Cohen face and overcome injury. Next up: Sian Sessions, from Deus Ex Machina, documents the people, places and adventures found during the making of iconic surf film South to Sian. Expect big waves, motorbikes, and dramatic cinematography. (Cost: $15. Purchase tickets online.)
Saturday, May 19
Start your Saturday at 8:50 a.m. with an invigorating five-kilometer Whistler Parkrun starting at the Lost Lake Passivhaus, just steps from Whistler Village (and conveniently close to a big cooked breakfast post-run). The run heads through Lost Lake Park’s trails and around the lake which, like most of Whistler, has views of the local mountains. (Cost: free. Arrive at 8:50 a.m. for a 9 a.m. start and register online in advance).
Sun’s out guns out, so get your biceps ready for some competitive Forged Axe Throwing. The mobile trailer is open 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. at Whistler Olympic Plaza. The aim of the game is to hurl axes at a target to hit bulls-eye. Bring your finest lumberjack plaid. (Cost: free.)
Between noon and 4 p.m., get the party started at the Table Tutors: DJ Experience at Whistler Olympic Plaza. The workshop offers music mixing, live beat production and turntable tutoring. You’ll learn to scratch records, create a live beat and build a set. This workshop is available Saturday and Sunday, so you can stop by for more the next day. (Cost: free).
Mountain biker? Stop by the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre for a screening of Darcy Turenne’s mountain biking documentary The Moment, followed by a Q&A with freeride mountain bike pioneer Brett Tippie. Doors open at 8 p.m. (Cost: by donation to the BC Aboriginal Youth Mountain Bike program.)
Enjoy climbing? Choose the 7 p.m. or 9 p.m. Whistler Film Festival Adventure Film Series screening of Dirtbag: The Legend of Fred Beckey at the Maury Young Arts Centre. Fred Beckey was one of the most influential climbers, as well as a nomadic author and dirtbag who inspired generations of athletes to hit the road on a quest to further their sport. (Cost: $15. Purchase tickets online.)
Sunday, May 20
Brum brum. Do you love Austin Powers, The Italian Job, Goldfinger, Swordfish, The Spy Who Loved Me—ok most Bond movies—not for the narrative, but for the legendary British car engineering? Up to 100 vintage British vehicles will be in Creekside Village from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. for the All British Car Show. (Cost: free).
The final screening of the Whistler Film Festival Adventure Film Series begins at 5 p.m. with the Short Film Series: seven short films in 97 minutes followed by the Western Canadian premiere of surf documentary Proximity. Proximity is directed by award-winning filmmaker Taylor Steel and Produced by Teton Gravity Research (TGR). The documentary pairs surfing icons with young surfers today to explore the relationship between people, time and place in locations around the world. (Cost: $15. Purchase tickets online.)
In addition to the smorgasbord of activities above, GO Fest offers free concerts at the Village Square Mainstage. Juno-winning Canadian pop and alternative rock group The Philosopher Kings will launch the live music series planned for GO Fest at 7:30 p.m. on Friday night, May 18. On Saturday, May 19 at 3 p.m., Carmanah will lay down their unique west coast soul sound. Later that night at 7:30 p.m. roots rock quartet Current Swell take the stage. On Sunday, May 20 Coco Jafro will play their worldly funk fusion and musical rhythms from Africa to the Americas at 3 p.m.; followed by forward-thinking electronic music from the Funk Hunters at 7:30 p.m.
Heading to GO Fest for a girls’ long weekend with your favorite adventurers? The weekend has a packed schedule, and we’ve rummaged through for an itinerary covering the plentitude of activities for you and your gal pals.
Friday, May 18
9 to 10:30 a.m. Ease into your long weekend with Gentle Yoga & Essential Oils with Andrea Nacey at Whistler’s newest yoga studio Bear Paw Yoga. (Cost: drop-in $35, Bear Paw pass-holders: $15. Preregistration is required.) Then take your serenity over to the Village to explore and to settle in at your hotel.
Your evening starts at 5:30 p.m. with an hour-long Camping & Hiking: Packing 101 workshop at the GO Fest Haven at Whistler Olympic Plaza. Planning your packing will get you charged up for summer adventuring in Whistler’s mountains. The workshop will help you hone what you bring, and also learn to pack in a way that has fewer “hey has anyone seen the…” moments on trail. Fun fact: did you know women should distribute the weight in their backpacks differently to men? This takes advantage of the strong female lower body. (Cost: free. Sign up in advance at the GO Fest Haven). Afterwards pick up food as you stroll down the Village Stroll towards the Village Square.
The Philosopher Kings hit the Village Square stage live at 7:30 p.m. Yup, the Juno-winning pop and alternative rock group are live and free right in the heart of Whistler. (Cost: free.)
Then head back along the stroll to the Maury Young Arts Centre in time for the Whistler Film Festival Adventure Film Series Canadian premiere screening of In The Starlight at 9 p.m. directed by Mathieu Le Lay. The documentary follows outdoor photographer Paul Zizka as he searches out the world’s starriest skies. (Cost: $15. Purchase tickets online.)
Saturday, May 19
Ease into your morning with KIND Yoga from 8 to 9 a.m. at the GO Fest Base Camp at Whistler Olympic Plaza. (Cost: free. Just drop in 15 minutes early.) If you’ve not had breakfast, don’t worry, because everybody gets a healthy KIND snack after class. Yum.
Pick up the pace mid-morning at 10 a.m. with Whistler Cycling Club’s Road Bike Group Ride for all abilities. The club meets at Whistler Village Sports in Mountain Square. (Cost: free to Whistler Cycling Club members, $2 for non-members. Arrive at 10 a.m. to register and the ride leaves at 10:30 a.m.). The club will show you a sampling of Whistler’s incredible road cycling with views aplenty.
At noon you’ll head to the Alta Lake Station House for Paint with Isobel at the Lake. Isobel MacLaurin is a renowned local artist who paints Whistler’s landscapes with a bold, colourful eye. (Cost: free. Alta Lake Station House is not accessible by car, so park at Wayside Park and walk along the Valley Trail.)
Alternatively, if you couldn’t get enough of scent, join Essential Oils 101 with Aimee Decaigny at 1 p.m. at GO Fest Haven at Whistler Olympic Plaza. (Cost: free. Sign up in advance at the GO Fest Haven.)
At 3 p.m. the live music starts with a female vocalist in indie band Carmanah— known for their unique west coast soul sound—at the Village Square Main Stage. (Cost: free.)
Then get temporarily inked at Henna Fun at GO Fest Haven at 4 p.m. (Cost: $5 minimum donation. Sign up in advance at the GO Fest Haven.)
You’ll be ready for a glass of wine by now. Wine About Art runs from 6 to 8 p.m. at the GO Fest Base Camp at Whistler Olympic Plaza. You create your own canvas guided by local artist Penny Eder of White Dog Studios. (Cost: $50. Register through White Dog Studios.)
Now it’s time for more music: roots rock quartet Current Swell take the Village Square Mainstage for the headline performance at 7:30 p.m. (Cost: free.)
Sunday, May 20
Planning to share your weekend on Instagram? Facebook? Snapchat? Give your online friends #FOMO by tuning up your photography skills at the Digital Photography Workshop from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Alta Lake Station House. (Cost: $59. Alta Lake Station House is not accessible by car, so park at Wayside Park and walk along the Valley Trail. Register online here.)
Take a few hours to relax before the evening’s events. At 5 p.m. is the Whistler Film Festival Adventure Film Series’ Short Film Series that screens seven short films in 97 minutes followed by the Western Canadian premiere of surf documentary Proximity. Directed by award-winning filmmaker Taylor Steel and Produced by Teton Gravity Research (TGR), Proximity pairs surfing icons with young surfers today to explore the relationship between people, time and place in locations around the world. (Cost: $15. Purchase tickets online.)
Once again, finish the evening with another fantastic live music set from DJ duo The Funk Hunters at 7:30 p.m. Their electronic music is influenced by old-school soul, funk and hip-hop. Bring your dancing shoes. (Cost: free.)
Monday, May 21
Before you head back home again, there’s time for one final KIND yoga to start your Monday right. Join us 9 a.m. at the GO Fest Base Camp, Whistler Olympic Plaza. (Cost: free. Just drop in 15 minutes early.)