It is another big week in the valley as music, holiday cheer, celebrating the winter solstice, and other events coming to help us rush headlong towards Christmas and the end of 2016.
You’ve already noticed that it has been darn cold this week in the Vail Valley, and the arrival of the winter solstice, that moment when the days start getting longer and we’re headed towards the warmth of spring, is welcome. As the thermometer crests 40 degrees today, you can take some solace in the fact that Wednesday marks the moment when we’re headed in the right direction.
Celebrate the hope of warmer temperatures and the inevitable first flowers of spring with the Town of Vail’s winter solstice lantern walk. A community celebration of light, participants meet at the Covered Bridge for a festive procession through Vail Village. Arrive early at the Covered Bridge to decorate a holiday cookie before the walk winds its way to the Gore Creek Promenade illuminated by lanterns for the opening celebration of the Tenth Annual Vail Winterfest Ice Theater presented by Vicki and Kent Logan. Free. Dec. 21, 5 p.m., Vail Covered Bridge, 241 S Frontage Rd E., Vail Village.
Wait, what’s that you say, you don’t have a lantern for the walk? Don’t worry, local artist Helen Hiebert hosts a free paper lantern workshop at the Vail Public Library on Wednesday prior to the solstice walk. Free. Dec. 21, 1:30 p.m., Vail Public Library 292 West Meadow Dr., Vail Village.
Looking for something to do after your lantern light has gone out? Head on up to the Vilar Performing Arts Center for a Wednesday night presentation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. This new adaptation of Dickens’ perennial classic fills the stage with first class professional actors, lush costumes, stunning sets and puppetry, song and dance, a heavy dose of humor, and a timeless message. With the music of 26 beloved traditional carols of the season woven throughout the tale, it’s the perfect way to begin the holiday festivities. In fact, we bet you'll like it so much that you’ll be tempted to return for an encore performance on Thursday evening. $65 Adult/$35 Child. Dec. 21, 22, 6:30 p.m., Vilar Performing Arts Center, 68 Avondale Ln, Beaver Creek.
On Friday shift gears and take in one of the most successful tribute bands to ever take the stage as Avon’s Agave hosts 40 Oz To Freedom with opening act Primal J and the Neaderthals. A tribute to the legendary So Cal act Sublime, 40 Oz To Freedom won the 2010 San Diego Music Award for Best Tribute and has toured the entire US and Canada for over six years, developing one of the largest tribute band followings in the world. 21 + only, $10 advance/$12 door. Dec. 23, 9:30 p.m. Agave, 060 W Beaver Creek Blvd, Avon.
Saturday it’s time to recover from all the fun, do some last-minute Christmas shopping and get ready for the big day, so take a moment to slow down, chill out and get close to nature with a free guided snowshoe tour at the top of Vail Mountain courtesy of the Adventure Ridge Nature Discovery Center. The beauty and silence of the snow-covered alpine forest will help you remember that, despite all the action, parties and events of this hectic holiday season, it’s always a good idea to slow down and savor the moment when you have the chance to do so. Free. Dec. 24, 5:30 p.m., Nature Discovery Center at Adventure Ridge, Vail Mountain. Note: a valid lift ticket or season pass is needed to ride the gondola to Adventure Ridge.