This year’s annual Trailing of the Sheep Festival will take place October 9th – 12th, 2014. This annual event has been named one of the top ten festivals in the world by msn travel. This years festival will be no exception. For all event information please visit http://www.trailingofthesheep.org/
Sure, Munich has its traditional Oktoberfest each fall, replete with plentiful beer, brats and a rocking party atmosphere. But the Wood River Valley, with our deep European roots but upstart ways, takes Oktoberfest and makes it our own with Crosstoberfest, a weekend of cyclo-cross bike racing, a craft beer fest and much, much more.
Cyclo-cross is coming to the Wood River Valley this weekend and you're invited to the party (photo: crosstoberfestidaho.com)
Cyclo-cross is a type of bicycle race; one that pits cyclist against cyclist and racers against a full complement of terrain that can include gravel, dirt, mud, sand, stairs, pavement, and yes, in Idaho, in the fall, even snow. Riders compete in many laps of a short course and must dismount, carry their bikes to navigate obstructions, remount, keep riding and do it again. It is America’s fastest growing cycle-sport and it is great fun for both participants and spectators.
Cyclists ride all kinds of bikes, but cyclo-cross specific bikes are lightweight with narrow tires and drop handlebars. They typically have a greater tire clearance, lower gearing, stronger frames, cantilever brakes and a more upright riding position.
More than 75 craft beers are the star of the Crosstoberfest show
Our version of Oktoberfest is about more than just racing, though – like it’s German cousin, it’s also a celebration of beer, food and music. Now in its tenth year, Crosstoberfest, sponsored by Hailey’s Power House Pub & Bike Studio and Sun Valley Magazine throws a party with two days of original live music and almost 75 different pours from 20 breweries. Locally grown and raised Bavarian-inspired food keeps racers and spectators energized.
Crosstoberfest Idaho is the brainchild of Billy Olson, a former professional road bike racer and owner of the hybrid bike repair shop/burger and beer joint (with really good food) that is Power House in Hailey. Olson is a huge proponent of biking of all kinds, for every age and ability level, in the Wood River Valley. Crosstoberfest reflects his philosophy that biking is for everyone, with race categories for children, juniors, masters and mixed groups.
This two-wheeling weekend takes place at Old Cutters Park in Hailey. Men’s and women’s events launch Friday, October 11, at 4 p.m. and the fun resumes at 11 a.m. on Saturday. Prizes abound for participants and include everything from beer for the adults to cash prizes. The event benefits Road & Dirt, a non-profit organization promoting local cycling events.
Flow trails are coming to Baldy next summer, adding to Sun Valley's endless two-wheel opportunities (photo courtesy Tal Roberts)
With more than 1,100 miles of mountain bike single track in the immediate area and endless road biking, the Sun Valley area is rightfully recognized around the country as biking Nirvana. And it’s only getting better.Atop Bald Mountain, work continues on the new flow trails being cut and readied for summer 2014. Nine new trails, all with lift access, are planned to add thrills to summer fun in the coming seasons.
Get stoked! This flow trail will be as fun as it looks (photo courtesy Tal Roberts)
Don’t forget it’s also sheep weekend in Sun Valley. The Trailing of the Sheep Festival kicks off on Thursday and activities abound for the entire family.
The weather this weekend in the Sun Valley area looks like it will cooperate, so get out there and enjoy everything this wonderful, chock-a-block weekend has to offer whether it’s biking, sipping a beer, eating a lot of lamb, or enjoying the region’s rich history.
The sheep are making their way to town for a weekend that's all about them
It is officially October in Sun Valley, and that can mean only one thing: the sheep are coming! The countdown has begun to the 17th Trailing of the Sheep Festival that kicks off October 10. This wild and woolly weekend has been called one of the Top Ten Festivals in the world by MSN Travel, one of the Top 200 U.S. Festivals by Amazing Festivals and one of the Top 100 Festivals in North America by the ABA. Around here, we just call it a beautiful fall weekend that provides a wonderful glimpse into our region’s rich history. And the parade of sheep down Main Street in Ketchum is pretty entertaining, too.
It is believed that John Hailey first brought sheep into the Wood River Valley in the 1860s. They soon became a source of fiber and food for early settlers. As the mining industry became less important in the region’s economy, the role of sheep increased. For decades, the sheep population in the state of Idaho greatly outnumbered the human population!
All eyes are on the region's rich history during this festival
The Trailing of the Sheep Festival celebrates this heritage in a very colorful, flavorful, hands-on way. The four-day event kicks off on Thursday, October 10, and continues through the Trailing of the Sheep parade that runs down Main Street at noon on Sunday, October 13. In between, events up and down the valley entertain and educate.
One of the Festival highlights (among many) focuses on food. If you are a lover of lamb, you truly don’t want to miss opportunities to taste and savor this delicacy in countless incarnations. All week, even before the official kick-off of the Trailing of the Sheep Festival, foodies can enjoy a lamb dine-around in Ketchum. Local chefs are offering all kinds of lamb specials — from a modern take on the traditional herb crusted rack of lamb with red wine and rosemary sauce at B. Restaurant in Ketchum, to lamb sliders with Lava Lake lamb on Big Wood bread buns at the Cellar Pub, to slow roasted lamb tacos at Despos. Many of your local favorite eateries are offering new takes on lamb so be sure to reserve a different table each night of the week.
Lots of tasty lamb treats are available to sample at the Folklife Fair
Sun Valley’s historic Trail Creek Cabin is on the sheep celebration, too. The talented chef Wendy Little is sure to have an innovative take on incorporating lamb into her fall menu. Please call 208.622.2800 for more information.
Other eating (and drinking) opportunities are abundant, as well. Cooking classes featuring lamb and a course in pairing wines with lamb are scheduled for October 10. A barbecue on Irving’s Hill and Main Street Market in Ketchum will be available from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sunday.
Demonstrations show that not every process need be automated
My family’s favorite event of the weekend is the Folklife Fair that takes place in Hailey on Saturday, October 12. From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Roberta McKercher Park, enjoy the spectacle of Boise Highlanders’ bagpipers, drummer and dancers; Peruvian dancers and musicians; Oinkari Basque Dancers; Polish Highlanders and dozens of exhibitions featuring sheep shearing, wool spinning and sheep herding, as well as countless booths showcasing fiber art, face painting, crafts, and, of course, lots of lamb-inspired food.
The colorful Trailing of the Sheep parade caps off a fabulous weekend on Sunday, Oct. 13
Then there’s the parade that you have to see to believe. Hundreds of sheep racing and jumping down Main Street preceded by wonderful musicians and dancers is a sight you won’t see anywhere else.
For a full schedule for the weekend, please click HERE.
Sun Valley Resort is offering special incentive to come, stay and enjoy all the weekend has to offer with room rates starting at $159 for single or double room. Mention Trailing of the Sheep Festival when you make your reservation.
Think sheep, think fall and I’ll see you at the Festival!
Thu, Oct 10, 2013 – 5:00pm - Sun, Oct 13, 2013 – 3:00pm
17th ANNUAL TRAILING OF THE SHEEP FESTIVAL
Festival Honors Rich and Colorful History and Culture of Sheepherding in Idaho & The West
Dates: Thursday, October 10- Sunday, October 13, 2013
Description: Unique four-day festival honoring the history, heritage and cultures of sheepherding in Idaho and the west. Includes a full-day Sheep Folklife Fair, a Fiber Festival, dancers, musicians, folk and traditional art, storytelling and culinary events featuring chefs, restaurants and American Lamb. The event also includes workshops on fiber, cooking with lamb, photography, history, culture and a variety of other events. There is a two-day National Qualifying Sheepdog Trial in conjunction with the Festival. There are exhibits, storytelling, hikes and the Big Sheep Parade with 1,500 sheep strutting lively down Main Street, Ketchum, Idaho.