Lift Line: This Weekend’s Can’t Miss Events

Forever Plaid is hanging up its bowties.

By Katie Matteson

 Forever Plaid is closing the curtain!

Don’t miss the FINAL show of Forever Plaid!  This finger snapping, toe tapping, fun for the whole family musical comedy is playing for a final time. Don’t miss your last chance to see one of Sun Valley‘s classic acts.

When: Friday, March 30th, 7:30 PM.Where: The Boiler Room, Sun Valley Village.Info: Their final show is $10, and tickets are available at the door.

 The Roundhouse season is ending!: Your last chance for fondue this winter!

The ski season isn’t over for another couple weeks but the last weekend for fondue, beer and the best view around is this weekend! The last night for dinner at the Roundhouse is Saturday, March 31st and the last day for Roundhouse lunch is Sunday, April 1st.

When: This weekend!Where: The Roundhouse, Bald Mountain.Info:  Call 208-622-4111 for reservations or visit


A Wood River Bicycle Coalition Fundraiser with 5B CrossFit and the Ketchum Fire Department!

Get your row on and join us for the Ketchum Row Down, a fundraiser for the Wood River Bicycle Coalition! The Wood River Bicycle Coalition, Ketchum Professional Fire Fighters and Ketchum Volunteer Fire Fighters are hosting this exciting event.  This is event is sponsored by 5BCrossFit of Sun Valley and Hailey. There will be five different rowing events, including a 500-meter fun row for the kids! After the rowing heats, some competitors will compete in a CrossFit mystery Workout of the Day (WOD) and the athlete with the fastest combined time and the fastest row of their heat wins!

The Wood River Bicycle Coalition has set a fundraising goal of  $2,000.  The funds will start the process of extending the trail from the end of Corral Creek Trail to the trailhead of the Pioneer Cabin Trail.  This addition is long overdue and promises to be a Valley Favorite when complete.

When: Saturday, March 31st. 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM.Where: Ketchum Town Square.Info: More info can be found at


For more fun stuff happening in and around Sun Valley this week, check out The Cheat Sheet.

Shred: Fun for the Whole Family—Sun Valley-style

Top 10 local activities for families

By Mike McKenna

Sun Valley isn’t considered a world-class ski resort just because the skiing and boarding is so good. The real reason Sun Valley has long been considered one of the best ski resorts on the planet is because the resort, and it’s surrounding community, offers so much else to do.

With Spring Break in full swing and Sun Valley teeming with families, here’s a rundown of the Top 10 Fun Things for Families to do in Sun Valley during the winter.

1) Go Tubing!

Snow tubing is quickly growing in popularity nationwide, and spending a mere hour on Sun Valley’s Tubing Hill at Dollar Mountain will show you why. It’s fun and easy to do for anyone ages from 4 to 84. To read more about it, check out, Snow Tubing Sun Valley.

2) Give Cross Country Skiing a Shot!

If you’ve never tried cross country, or Nordic, skiing it’s a lot easier and much more fun than you think. Officially known as "Nordic Town USA," there’s no better place to pick up the sport than here. There are all kinds of Learn to Ski classes and rental package option available at the Sun Valley Nordic & Snowshoe Center located in the Sun Valley Club or  or at Galena Lodge , 23 miles to the north of Ketchum.

3) Go Bowling!

The Sun Valley Bowling and Game Room at Sun Valley Lodge is a step back in time and fun for the whole family.  Open daily from 4 to 10 pm, heck here  for more details.

4) Take Ski Lesson!

Whether you’ve been skiing for decades or have never hit the slopes before, the world renowned ski school at Baldy and Dollar Mountains can help you have more fun on the slopes. And having the kids spend a day or two in lessons not only increases their confidence and fun factor levels, it gives parents a chance to make some runs on their own. Check here for more info or here  for a fun story and tips about introducing kids to alpine sports.

5) Go Ice Skating!

Sun Valley has long been famous for its year-round ice shows. Spend some time skating on the same ice that hosted countless Olympians. For more info check here.

6) Catch a Movie!

Built in 1937, the Sun Valley Opera House offers first run movies and free daily showing of the classic film, "Sun Valley Serenade," at 4:30 pm. For a list of current films and show times check here. The Magic Lantern Cinema, at 100 East 2nd Avenue in Ketchum, also offers first run movies daily.

7) Go for a Swim!

The Sun Valley Resort offers three pools for swimming, including the infamous, heated Lodge Pool, which offers aprs ski cocktail service. The Wood River YMCA also has two large pools.

8) Hit a Museum!

The history of the Wood River Valley is as long and deep as powder day on Baldy. The Ketchum–Sun Valley Ski & Heritage Museum at 180 East 1st Street offers fascinating exhibits on everything from the local mining and sheepherding history to Ernest Hemingway’s time in Idaho to the story of America’s original ski resort. For more info on exhibits and schedules, check out Or check out the Ore Wagon Museum at 200 10th Street in Ketchum.

9) Go Fly Fishing!

Despite the snowy conditions, March is actually one of the best months to fly fish on the Big Wood River–and not just because guided rates are cheaper in winter. The Big Wood is great river for first-time fly fishers and there are no better guides on the planet than at Silver Creek Outfitters , offering shops in both the Sun Valley Village or downtown Ketchum. To read more about it, check out Winter on the Big Wood.

10) Do Nothing!

Lounge around at a ski lodge or your hotel room or a local coffee shop or at one of the area’s world-class restaurants and enjoy the views and ambience of life in the heart of Idaho.


Sun Valley Egg Hunt

Sun Valley Egg Hunt

On Friday, April 6 bring your youngsters, ages 10 & under, to the Sun Valley Village Egg Hunt from 4-6pm.
4pm-6pm Village Festivities include Face Painting at the Village Toy Store and live music in front of Bald Mountain Pizza
4:30pm sharp!  Egg Hunt with great prizes for kids around the Sun Valley Inn Pond

Parents- visit the Sun Valley Village shops for a special egg hunt just for you!
Brass Ranch, Pete Lane’s Mountain Sports, The Toy Store, Panache, Sun Valley Signatures & Gifts, The Chocolate Foundry, Towne & Parke Fine Jewelry and Silver Creek Outfitters

Lift Line: Sun Valley’s Sol Fest 2012

By Alec Barfield

I’ve come to the realization that this town has a knack for names that stick. Off the top of my head, here’s a few good ones:

"Marley in Mountains”— pure Rasta brilliance.

"Irving’s Red Hots" — Chicago meets Idaho.

"Whiskey Jacques" — the one and only.

"The Pio"— short and sweet.

"Sun Valley Summer Symphony"— sophistication with a ring.

And that’s just a small sampling of the catchiness. Maybe there’s something in the water. Maybe we’re all sun-drunk. Whatever it is, when it comes to names, locals like quirky and unique. We’re about firsts around here…

Which is why this weekend’s extravaganza is already off to a great start. Say it with me: "Sol Fest." Even my Japanese grandma could tell you that "sol" means "sun" in Spanish. And considering that "sol" is also a homophone of "soul," I’d say that "Sol Fest" is a genius name for what’s happening over the next three days.

Parties. Live music. Skiing down Main Street. More Parties. Lots more music. Plus oodles of Family Fun at Dollar Mountain. What I’ve also realized is that Sun Valley doesn’t mix a great names with mediocrity. When I said "parties," I meant four showdowns at three of Ketchum’s finest establishments: Grumpy’s and Whiskey’s on Friday, Apple’s on Saturday afternoon and Whiskey’s again that evening. And when I said "live music," I meant that there will be seasoned artists, musicians who didn’t just get famous on YouTube, playing at each shindig besides Apple’s (because they’ll be hosting the 4th annual Baldy Poker Run).

Blitzen Trapper

As cool as the Bermuda Cowboys (Friday@Grumpy’s) and Fox Street All Stars (Friday@Whiskey’s) should be, the main event is definitely the Blitzen Trapper show on Saturday. To be clear Saturday, the whole day, is actually the main event. If you’re trying to make a day of it (and I hope you do), then the Saturday’s festivities will begin at Apple’s around nine for the Poker Run. From there, it’s onto the Main Street Party, where Blitzen Trapper will headline a FREE multi-act concerto in Ketchum. Things just keep getting better: afterward there’s going to be a talented crew of long-shirted jibbers sliding across rails at the 511 building. Local favorite, Old Death Whisper, will round out the evening with a 10 o’clock show at Whiskey’s. Not a bad Saturday, eh?

For folks looking for Family-oriented Fun, there will be a Slide, Glide, Ride Relay at Dollar Mountain on Sunday. But don’t worry, the Main Street Party and subsequent Rail Jam will definitely be a good time for little ones. I should mention, however, that Sol Fest is going to be a young crowd. In the company’s own words "Sun Valley Resort is rolling out the red carpet for college students." Yup, everyone’s favorite demographic is getting some love from the nation’s oldest ski resort. Specifically, college students with a valid student I.D. will get 50% off lift tickets and "aggressive" lodging specials. Sounds gnarly.

So if you like wintry festivals with tons of good music and possibly gelande quaffing, don’t get stuck inside this weekend.

It’s time for Sol Fest, everybody. Come join the pun, err, fun!

Schedule of Events:

Friday March 23

      5:00 pm SolFest kick-off party at Grumpy’s Bar and Grill with musical request specialists Bermuda Cowboys

      10:00 pm Southern rockers, Fox Street All Stars, play Whiskey Jacques

Saturday March 24

      9:00 am – 2:00 pm Baldy Poker Run, register at Apple’s Bar and Grill

      5:00 pm Main Street Party. Blitzen Trapper headlines multi-act, free concert

      8:00 pm 511 Rail Jam at 511 Building, downtown Ketchum

      10:00 pm Local troubadours, Old Death Whisper, play Whiskey Jacques

Sunday March 25

      11:00 am Slide, Glide, Ride Relay at Dollar Mountain, a fun event for families and friends of all ages and sizes.


Lift Line: Surviving Sun Valley on College Break

By Steve Reighley

 Are you on college break enjoying Baldy’s steep runs but struggling with Ketchum and Sun Valley’s steep prices?  There are plenty of ways save your wallet this winter ‘s break and still have a great time.  Whether it’s with skiing, dining, or simply getting around town, keep an eye out for new deals and ways to save.


For skiers, don’t forget to inquire about the College Six Pack, which allows you to ski any six days throughout the winter for the price of just $259.  Saving $43 a day, or the College Triple Play pass for just $139. Now these are tough to beat no matter where you are.

Getting Around

Save some gas money and utilize Mountain Rides.  Sun Valley’s free public transportation system is a great option for getting around town and to and from the ski areas (Baldy and the terrain park on Dollar) without having to spend a dime.  No matter where you’re staying there should be an easily accessible bus stop for one of the many free bus routes.  Hop on board and save time, money and the environment.

Eating Out

If you find yourself dumbfounded by the food and drink prices in ski towns these days, at least one wallet saving option awaits right across the street from Warm Springs Lodge.  No, it’s not a Ramen Noodle outlet store, it’s  Irving’s Red Hots. You can grab a tasty, affordable hot dog and be back on the slopes in no time.  Saving a little extra money for some aprs beers on the sun drenched deck at Warm Springs or for some of Sun Valley’s wonderful nightlife. If you’re looking for a cold beer and some grub after a long day of skiing, check out the happy hour specials at some of Sun Valley’s best restaurants (This article highlighting the Valley’s best Aprs Skiing options).

So if you’re on college break and trying to save a buck, be mindful of options like these and don’t let the high prices keep you from having a good time.

Lift Line: Meet a Lift Supervisor

Dollar Mountain Lift Supervisor Julian Tyo.

Dollar Mountain’s Julian Tyo

By Katie Matteson

Julian Tyo loves his job. He gets to hang out on Dollar with park rats and ski-teamers in the winter and move dirt around and ride bikes in the summer. As the Dollar Lift Supervisor for the past two years and a member of the talented Trail Crew in the summer, Julian has been an integral part of some of the "reinvention" of the Original Ski Town. He has seen the terrain parks and half-pipe move to Dollar, creating a mountain filled with thrills for kids and skiers of all ages. He has seen (and helped create) one of the most epic mountain bike courses ever at the National Mountain Bike Championships, held here in Sun Valley last summer. He is an avid telemark skier, one of the Co-Directors of Sun Valley Tele (the longest running tele series in the country), a member of the newly formed Marketing Alliance’s Event Committee and a guy that loves where he lives, works and plays.

 First Run in the A.M.?

Upper College to Flying Squirrel to Warm Springs. Because it fits like an old glove.

Last Run of the Day?

I try not to call such things.

 Best Run on Baldy?

It’s a tie between Limelight and Greyhawk.

 Favorite Lunch Spot?

Kobe Sliders at the Sun Valley Clubhouse.

 First Memory on Skis?

Classic Nordic skis at Mt. Hood with my parents. In my memory, the day went something like this: Dad throwing me in the snow, dad and his friends getting "lost," mom and dad arguing about getting "lost" and burgers at a funky diner in Sandy. I’m fairly certain I had a vanilla milkshake.

 Who First Got You on Downhill Skis?

My five-day foray into snowboarding not withstanding, my fianc first got me on downhill skis at the age of 20 on Mt. Ashland in southern Oregon. Having taken her on a downhill trail for her first time mountain biking, her idea of a good first ski day for me involved one run down the bunny hill followed by a bump run. To this day, she still hates mountain biking and I still hate bumps. My second day skiing was five years ago when she took me to the top of Baldy–tough love!

Favorite Memory on Skis?

Skiing Limelight and Rock Garden on Baldy, Christmas Day 2008, right after the two-foot storm.

 Favorite Off-Mountain Activity?

Summertime putt-putt at the SV Clubhouse.

 Do you have a skiing/boarding obsession (something you couldn’t live without)?

My one piece.

 Why Sun Valley–what do you love about it?

Sun Valley is where I rediscovered myself, fell in love again and where I want to be for the rest of my life. The mountain biking isn’t bad either.

What is Your Passion?

Helping groups succeed and moving dirt. Or is it helping groups succeed at moving dirt? Both for that matter.

What’s your job on the mountain?

This is my second season as the Dollar Mountain Lift Supervisor in the winter, and in the summer I work for the Trail Crew on Bald Mountain.

 How did you get it?

I worked at Pete Lane’s  for three great seasons in the bike shop and the River Run Ski Shop, but ultimately wanted to work outside with the Mountain Department. A friend told me about the position on Dollar and I got hired after a long interview process, starting with the Trail Crew later that year.

 What’s the Best Part about your job?

In the winter I love being a part of the dynamic energy at Dollar–the kids, the terrain parks, the beginner skiers, the adaptive programs, the race teams and the tubing hill. In the summer I love being out on the mountain doing honest work and am honored to have a role in developing lift-accessed mountain biking on Bald Mountain.

Forever Plaid – Final Show!

Forever Plaid – Final Show!

Don’t miss this final show of their final season.

Boiler Room

Friday, March 30


Tickets $10; Purchase at the door


Doors open 1 hr before showtime

Forever Plaid Logo 4x2@72

Lift Line: Sun Valley Film Fest

By Blog Sun Valley staff

There has been a long and romantic relationship between the Film Industry and Sun Valley. It began when America’s original ski resort first opened on December 21, 1936, with a gala featuring some of the biggest star of the big screen of the day, like Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert.

And it continues this weekend as the Sun Valley Film Festival debuts by welcoming some of the most creative and innovative modern-day filmmakers to share their work for four star-studded days.

The festival features over 60 films with genres including Dramatic Features, Documentaries, Children’s Programming, Short Films, Television Series, Web Series and Idaho based films, including everything from low budget Indie films (like Travis Swartz’s "Nobody Cares," staring Boise actors Chris Thometz and Joe Golden) to big budget Hollywood flicks like “Friends with Kids,” starring the likes of Kristen Wiig and Jon Hamm.

And the festival is already garnering national buzz for it’s unique judging categories like the "One in a Million" prize for films made for less than $1 million, and for films like Ryan O’Nan’s "The Brooklyn Brothers Beat the Best," Buhl’s own Jaffe Zinn’s "Magic Valley," starring Scott Glenn, and the 2012 Oscar-winning short "The Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore."

Films are being shown at The Sun Valley Opera House and The Magic Lantern Theater from Thursday night, March 15th, through Sunday afternoon, March 18th. Check here for the full schedule and ticket prices and package options.

Welcome Transworld Snow Conference 2012!

Welcome Transworld Snow Conference 2012

Shred: Catching up with a Kids’ Ski Instructor

Sun Valley ski instructor Brook "Trout" Leiphart.

Brook "Trout" Leiphart

By Mike McKenna

Since the very beginning, some 75 years now and counting, Sun Valley has been heralded for having one of the best ski school programs in the world. It’s one of the big reasons the ski area has been so well respected and much beloved for so long. That’s because the school at Sun Valley not only teaches people of all ages to ski, they somehow teach folks to love the sport.

My oldest son, Jack, who’s soon to turn four, has been participating in the Little Spuds Sessions. After just a few sessions with a member of the "Redcoats," as Jack calls the instructors, his progress has been amazing. He can now ski Quarter Dollar from top to bottom without any help of any kind. Heck, he’s even carrying his skis to and from the truck–at least most of the way! And now, I not only look upon my young shredder with pride, but also with a serious sense of relief. No more getting dragged down the hill by a giggling kid!

Brook "Trout" Leiphart has been my son’s instructor and Jack likes to tell us how " my Redcoat Brook" taught him how to "make pizza,"  "turn like a plane" and "fly like Superman"

As his nickname implies, Brook "Trout" is very active in the local fly fishing community, regularly volunteering for the Hemingway chapter of Trout Unlimited, and has been a ski instructor at Sun Valley for 11 years. He spends the summers teaching trap and skeet shooting for Sun Valley Company.

Brook carved turns through a handful of fun questions about life as an instructor in Sun Valley.

Where did you learn to ski?

At Ostego  in Michigan when I was around three or four.

 What’s your favorite part of being a ski instructor?

I was in the real world working a real job, but I wasn’t happy. So I decided that I wanted to do something worthwhile with my life. I don’t have any kids or any debt so I could afford to do something like this and I really enjoy it. Teaching kids to ski is very rewarding and worthwhile. Plus this job helps me reach my goal of skiing 1/3rd of the year, 122 days.

Another Little Spud has been taught how to ski--and to love the sport--at Dollar Mountain.

What is your favorite ski run?

On Baldy it’s Can-Can because it only has natural snow and on Dollar it’s Otto’s Run.

 What’s your favorite thing to eat for lunch?

Good old PB & Js from home.

 What’s the best part of life in Sun Valley?

Being able to ski here and taking advantage of everything else this place offers. This truly is a "no lift line" mountain. I’ve spent seasons in Park City and Lake Placid and no place beats Sun Valley. We’re really spoiled here.

What are your favorite non-skiing activities?

Fly fishing and I love hiking above timberline. I’m trying to hike all nine 12,000-foot peaks in Idaho. I’ve already hiked the highest points in all 50 states. I’m #111 on the Highpointers‘ list.

Who is your hero?

Sir Edmund Hilary. I was born on the day he summated Mount Everest.

What’s your motto?

Enjoy life.