Author: Tyler Tobin

2024 Big Sky Skijoring Best in the West Showdown

The 6th Annual Best In The West Skijoring Competition: Big Sky, MT To Host The Best Skijoring Teams In North America.

Big Sky, MT: The Big Sky Skijoring Association (BSSJ) will host their 6th annual Best In The West Showdown Presented By Delzer Diversified, Lone Mountain Land Company, Lone Mountain Ranch, & RentBiz in Big Sky, Montana on February 3-4, 2024.

The team at Big Sky Skijoring has been turning the skijoring world upside down. Now in its 6th year, The Best In The West Showdown has a reputation for pushing the envelope of competitive skijoring by pairing cutting edge course design, showmanship and elements of mountain culture never seen before. The results speak for themselves.

Last year’s event attracted over 150 of the best teams in North America with 4000 spectators. The highlight of the Showdown culminated with the Keith Sayers FMX team performing the world’s first ever snowmobile backflip over a live skijoring race. In their final run in the open division the team of Colin Cook (skier), Richard Webber III (rider) and Serge To Paradise (horse) put together a smooth clean run through the berms, jumps and flames just in time for pro freestyle snowmobiler and Winter X Games champion Willie Elam to hit the throttle and lay out a huge backflip over the team as they dashed through the finish line. The crowd went wild, as did the internet with millions of views as the spectacular moment went viral.

“When our team here at Wrangler saw that video, we had to learn more about this event,” says Clay Hanback (Sr. Manager of Western Content Marketing & Partnerships, Wrangler). “Our brand is grounded in the spirit of people who work hard, have fun, and showcase courageous individuality. After seeing the coverage of The Showdown, meeting with their team, and hearing their vision for the future, we clearly found that spirit. We are very excited to be part of the event this year and can’t wait to get out to Big Sky.”

The culture of this event is something special, said Erik Morrison, one of the producers of Big Sky Skijoring. “It’s the inclusivity of it all. Big Sky Skijoring is carrying on the tradition of skijoring while actively expanding the sport to appeal to new competitors and audiences across all generations. You have cowboys and cowgirls, ski racers, freeride competitors, die hard dirtbag skiers/riders, celebrities, families, and everyone in between on the edge of their seats enjoying the show together. Everyone is part of the culture of the event, and everyone is a VIP. The best seats in the house are anywhere with a great view of the course to cheer on the competitors, a cozy fire pit and enjoying some food and drinks with the colorful company. That’s the Big Sky vibe our team is working to cultivate with The Showdown.”

This year’s event will feature two action packed days of racing.  A total of 154 skijoring teams will leave it all on the course for their chance at a piece of the $15,000 prize purse. The Keith Sayers FMX team will be back again to perform their big air exposition during intermissions. This year’s lineup includes X Games athlete and Snowmobile Freestyle Gold winner Brett Turcotte. There will be an opportunity for the public to meet and greet with many of the skijoring and FMX athletes at the vendor village. Similar to last year, the village will offer ticket holders numerous options for local food, beverage, retail, and a comfortable atmosphere overlooking the race.

“This Big Sky venue and the community that is helping pull it all together is something special.” says Justa Adams (Executive Director of BSSJ). ”Our community partners don’t just help sponsor the event. They roll up their sleeves, dig in and build it! Thanks to the teamwork of Delzer Diversified, RentBiz and Lone Mountain Land Co. working to stockpile snow, we are able to build a quality course in the face of a lean start to the winter season. I’m really proud of our team and how things are coming together for The Showdown. I can’t wait to see what our course designers Patrick McVey (Course Groomer and General Manager at Lone Mountain Ranch) and Jeremy Ueland (Program Director of the Big Sky Ski Education Foundation) come up with this year.”

For ticket info and a complete itinerary of the weekend’s events please visit bigskyskijoring.com.

First Fridays: Big Sky Artists’ Collective

Join us tomorrow, January 5th, at the Big Sky Artists’ Studio Gallery for an exclusive reception marking the start of our 2024 monthly art series. This First Friday event will illuminate the captivating original photography by Susan Elliott and Thom Peterson. From 5:00 to 7:00pm, immerse yourself in their compelling creations – all are welcome.

Discover these exceptional works exhibited throughout January. Be sure to stay tuned for details on our upcoming February First Friday showcase. Don’t miss the extraordinary celebration of artistry and talent.

Address is: 88 Ousel Falls Road, C-1. Big Sky, MT 59716.

See event posters below and head to the Big Sky Artists’ Collective website HERE for further information.

 

Winter Lights & Delights: Town Center Fridays

Experience the enchantment of Big Sky Town Center every Friday between 4–7pm from December 22 to the end of March. Immerse yourself in a lively atmosphere where local retailers, restaurants, bars, and art galleries offer exclusive specials, retail raffles, local musicians, and more. Friday nights in Town Center are the place to be this winter season!

For the inaugural event kick off, enjoy live music at Block 3 from 6:00pm – 8:00pm, followed by live music at Tips Up from 8:00pm – 10:00pm, then capping off the evening with a DJ, also at Tips up, from 10:00pm – 1:00am. Enjoy the night, lights, and delights!

New Business Spotlight: New West KnifeWorks

Welcome to Town Center: New West KnifeWorks

Please join them for their grand opening celebration this Wednesday, December 20 from 11:00am – 7:00pm. Enjoy a book signing experience with Gator from the show, Yellowstone, knife demos/tips, food, drinks, and so much more.

  • 11:00am – Ribbon Cutting
  • 11:30am – Gator tells tales of Yellowstone and does book signing
  • 1:30pm – Knife demos and tips (around this time)
  • 3:30pm – Hog unveiled – Official party begins
  • 7:00pm – Party technically ends

Brief Company History:

New West KnifeWorks started 26 years ago, when founder Corey Milligan decided he was tired of the ubiquitous white-or-black handled kitchen knives at his river guide job. He converted the second bedroom of his 2-bed apartment into the very first production facility (with permission from his wife Jess, under the condition that he would not ruin the carpet!)

For the first 10 years in business, Corey participated in just trade shows to build the business. 1 man, 1 van, 1 dream, and 26 years later, New West has just opened their 7th brick-and-mortar store here in beautiful Big Sky, Montana. The vision remains the same: to produce the highest-quality functional knife art in the world. Their products use only American-sourced materials, and are all assembled in their production facility located in Victor, Idaho. Each knife, Rock Block, resin magnet, etc. is taken from start to finish by a single artisan craftsperson, and arrives to the customer with a lifetime warranty and free sharpening for life.

Services to be provided and additional information:

Starting in January 2024, sharpening of knives, axes, tomahawks, scissors, shears, etc. will be available at the Big Sky location. The products do not have to be from New West. 3rd party sharpening will range from $9.00 – $25.00. Until then, sharpening projects will be sent to Victor, Idaho at no shipping charge to the customer.

Learn to throw a tomahawk! The Big Sky facility has a complete and safe location to throw. Also, get a new profile picture in an outrageous bison coat – a sustainable product that is made especially for New West. They get the pelts from a Jackson, Wyoming bison meat farm, and they are gorgeous statement pieces. While they are technically for sale, they are mostly used for props in photos.

Lastly, there is a gift for everyone in their new location as New West services the culinary community with knives, kitchen accessories and wine keys. Additionally, the Mountain Man Toy Shop provides utility knives, pocket knives, hunting and skinning knives, tomahawks, axes, apparel, and fun unique gifts such as bolt action pens, cast iron pans, sharpening kits, beaver fur koozies, navigation and survival manuals, and so much more. There are also fun things for kids such as non-artifact arrowheads, titanium whistles, high quality metal spinning tops, and fidget spinners.

They ship all over the USA, so if you are traveling and are wary about flying with these purchases, rest assured they will take care of you.

Visit them further online HERE

 

New Business Spotlight: The Agency Real Estate

The Agency is a unique kind of real estate company, defined by our strength of character, rebellious spirit and passion for reinvention. Breaking away from the traditional brokerage model, The Agency takes a collaborative approach to the business of real estate.

As Managing Partner of The Agency Bozeman and The Agency Big Sky, Joy Vance is a dynamic, service-first leader who guides our premiere Montana offices with grace, humor and extensive knowledge of the local luxury real estate market.

The Agency brings our boutique approach to the world’s most coveted markets. Our global presence allows us to serve our clients with a full scope of residential, commercial, luxury leasing, vacation rental and new development services.

The Agency | Global Boutique Real Estate Brokerage

December Events: The Wilson Hotel

Head on over to The Wilson Hotel to take part in the following activities through the end of December. Happy Holidays!

December Events

  • Saturdays – Board Game Night at The Bar – 5:00pm – 9:00pm (Starting December 16th)
  • Fridays – Kid’s Happy Hour with Crafts – 5:00pm – 9:00pm (Starting December 22nd, $5.00 for craft)
  • December 20th – The Giving Tree Wrapping Party – 5:00pm – 7:30pm. Wrap and Deliver Gifts. Pizza provided with a cash bar.
  • December 20th – Old fashioned Christmas with Carolers, Whiskey Tasting and Popcorn Garland Making – 5:00pm – 7:00pm
  • December 25th – Gingerbread House Decorating – 5:00pm – 7:00pm ($30.00 for kit)
  • December 27th – Live Music in the Lobby (Jazz Trio) with Whiskey Tasting by Willies Distillery – 5:00pm – 7:00pm
  • December 28th – Cocktail Making Class with our Bartenders – 6:00pm – 8:00pm ($25.00 plus tax)

 

New Business Spotlight: Thai Basil

Thai Basil sprouted as an unassuming venture, initially setting up shop under a humble tent at the bustling Big Sky and Livingston farmers markets. It wasn’t long before they recognized the need for a more permanent setup to safeguard their food and shield themselves from the unpredictable Rocky Mountain weather. Thus, they meticulously crafted a custom concession trailer and christened our endeavor ‘Thai Basil.’

Their journey traversed various concert venues across Montana, with a primary presence at Outlaw Brewing (Bozeman), where the genuine allure for authentic Thai cuisine blossomed. However, the limitations of their trailer became evident amidst scorching summers and biting winters. After an extensive quest, they finally settled on an inaugural brick-and-mortar location in Bozeman back in 2018.

Fast forward six years to October 2024, marking the auspicious opening of Thai Basil in Big Sky, situated at 112 Ousel Falls Road. They are elated to establish their roots in Big Sky, offering a year-round haven for aficionados of authentic Thai flavors and unparalleled service. Their menu boasts an expansive array of vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options, and they are eagerly poised to extend their warm hospitality to you soon.

Visit them online at: thaibasilmontana.com

Or phone them at: (406)-995-3471

Daily Hours are: Wednesday – Sunday 11:00am – 9:00pm. Closed Monday and Tuesday.

 

2023 Big Sky Christmas Stroll

BIG SKY CHRISTMAS STROLL: DEC. 8-10TH

View the full 2023 Christmas Stroll Guide by clicking HERE

Big Sky celebrates 26 years of community, giving and the holiday spirit.

Big Sky, MT: The streets of Big Sky will come alive during the 26th Annual Big Sky Christmas Stroll on December 8-10th. This community wide holiday celebration unites Big Sky Town Center, Meadow Village Center, Big Sky Resort, and our neighbors for a weekend of family fun and festivities.

The Stroll began in the Meadow Village Center in the winter of 1997 says Grant Jardine, Meadow Village Community Manager, and Chief of Alpine Property Management’s HOA Division. Our intimate gathering of locals and visitors alike came to celebrate the holidays and the beginning of the ski season. That first Christmas Stroll was very special for this community and that spirit lives on. It has grown with our community. The evening is jubilant with that holiday spirit. You can feel it in the air.

Now, twenty six years later the local tradition continues to be passed down to newcomers and the next generation of strollers. The community will gather at Meadow Village Center on Friday, December 8th at 5:30 p.m. for Santa’s arrival on a team of horses at Blue Ribbon Builders, the holiday tree lighting and photos with Santa at American Bank. The air will be filled with the sound of music as The Dickens Carolers and Lone Peak A Capella directed by John Zirkle will sing classic holiday songs as strollers enjoy the many open houses and offerings by Meadow Village merchants. Free sleigh rides by Lone Mountain Ranch will take guests on an east side meadow tour, over to the Chapel and down to the new Big Sky Resort Nordic Center. For the more adventurous strollers illuminated nordic skiing and winter use trails along the golf course will be available (weather dependent*), connecting Meadow Village to Big Sky Town Center.

The Stroll really is something special says Erik Morrison, Big Sky Town Center Marketing & Events Manager. The event has matured and expanded over the years, yet still maintains its classic communal holiday vibe. Shop owners open their doors and invite strollers in to share their hospitality and holiday cheer. Children and their families line up for glimpses of Santa Claus and the chance to share their Christmas list. Luminaries line streets and trails connecting neighborhoods around our mountain village and guide strollers and skiers to their next destination. Children and adults skate and enjoy games/programs on the ice, while the crowd gathers and warms themselves around the bonfire in anticipation for the fireworks to come. The scene is reminiscent of holidays past. An eclectic mix of cozy small mountain town holiday traditions and Rockefeller Center circa 1950. Hard to capture yet instantly felt. The community seems to love it!

Saturday, December 9th the Stroll celebration continues in Big Sky Town Center. Join our neighbors at Beehive Basin Brewery for their annual Stroll Pre Party from 3-5 p.m. Along with Big Sky’s best craft beer, strollers can enjoy their new full bar, live music, and s’mores by the fire. From there guests may continue their stroll on foot or wagon ride and enjoy the many holiday activities downtown. Stop in The Wilson Hotel for the 2nd Annual Big Sky Winter Market Presented By Bozeman Health. Enjoy a gathering of local artisans, crafters, cottage goods, and other mountain made businesses. BASE will also be hosting Santa’s Holiday Lounge presented by First Security Bank. Bring the family to come and meet Santa himself. After enjoying the many open houses and activities strollers are invited to gather outside and look to the eastern skies for a fireworks display at 8 p.m.

The Stroll is not the only thing we are celebrating. Ski season has just begun with currently 8 runs and 195 skiable acres open at Big Sky Resort. Take the weekend to make some lift serviced laps and get your ski legs back under you. Come ski, stroll and stay with us this weekend with special offers from our lodging partners. Save on Big Sky Resort lift tickets and lodging with their latest packages and promotions. Stay and stroll in the heart of Town Center that weekend with the special “Local’s Rate” by The Wilson Hotel. Call (406) 995-9000 and mention it when booking with concierge for the best deal on rooms downtown. Enjoy a classic Big Sky Christmas Stroll experience like no other at the historic Lone Mountain Ranch. Save 25% off when booking their Bed and Breakfast package December 7th – 12th.

It’s easy to see Big Sky is the place to be this holiday season. Come join the fun. For more information about the 26th Annual Big Sky Christmas Stroll and the online Stroll Guide (coming soon) visit: visitbigsky.com/christmas-stroll.

New Business Spotlight: The Great Rocky Mountain Toy Company

The Great Rocky Mountain Toy Company – Town Center Grand Opening

Join us at Town Center for The Great Rocky Mountain Toy Company’s grand opening on December 9, 2023, during the Big Sky Town Center Christmas Stroll. Explore our wide selection of toys, games, and books, blending nostalgia with modern quirkiness. Don’t miss the ribbon cutting at 2:30 pm and special sales promotions!

Our dedicated team prides itself on being the ultimate authority on kids’ entertainment in the area. We’re a unique blend of vintage charm and contemporary eccentricity, fostering an unforgettable experience. At The Great Rocky Mountain Toy Company, we promote creativity, critical thinking, and community engagement through play, scientific exploration, and reading!

Soft Opening: December 1, 2023
Grand Opening: December 9, 2023 – during the Big Sky Town Center Christmas Stroll four our grand opening celebration! Experience our wide array of top-tier toys, books, and games, carefully curated with a touch of nostalgia. Be part of our ribbon-cutting ceremony, indulge in refreshments, and benefit from our exclusive grand opening sales promotions. Stay tuned for more event updates!

Event Recap: 5th Annual Friendsgiving

5th Annual Friendsgiving – 11/21/2023.

Location: The Wilson Hotel in Big Sky, MT

The ever-changing tapestry of seasons in Big Sky unveils a series of unique events that celebrate our town’s abundant offerings. As winter descends upon us, the mountains brace for skiers, the Town Center illuminates, and The Wilson Hotel beckons a multitude for its annual Friendsgiving dinner.

In its 5th year, the collaboration between The Wilson and Sweet Buns Catering anticipated their largest turnout yet, and it certainly didn’t disappoint. The line for the complimentary Thanksgiving feast snaked through the lobby, drawing local employees who eagerly awaited the sumptuous spread meticulously prepared for the occasion. What initially began as a gesture to feed those working on Thanksgiving has blossomed into something far more profound—it’s become a welcoming embrace for new town members, an opportunity to share the holiday spirit with fresh faces, and a vibrant initiation into our winter festivities, encapsulating the warm hospitality that defines our community. Friendsgiving has organically evolved into a winter tradition, marking the inauguration of our Town Center season in many ways.

A heartfelt appreciation extends to all the volunteers and contributors who generously supported the Big Sky Food Bank with their donations. Gratitude is also owed to The Wilson Hotel, Sweet Buns Catering, Block 3, and Tips Up for their exceptional hosting and preparations that made this event an unforgettable success!

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