Just like the first snowfall of winter, Opening Day at a ski resort is cause for celebration. What better way to kick off this ski season than with a trip to Sun Peaks, Canada’s second largest ski resort, to grab some of the first turns of the year? Here are the top five reasons to be at Sun Peaks for Opening Day on November 17, 2018.

Score the First Turns of the Season

Only four people can ride the coveted “first chair” of the season, but the first turns on Opening Day will give everyone butterflies in their stomach. After seven months of anticipation, the excitement of Opening Day is the payoff. Rise before dawn to try for the first chairlift ride, or enjoy the comfort of your bed and a warm breakfast before pulling on your boots. Either way, don’t miss the jittery excitement of those waiting for the ropes to drop and the cheer from the crowd when the first skiers and snowboarders are whisked up the mountain.

The Breakfast Buffet at Mantles Restaurant and Lounge

Whether you’re hitting the slopes, Nordic skiing, or snowshoeing, start your day off on the right foot with breakfast at Mantles Restaurant and Lounge, located in the Sun Peaks Grand Hotel. The Mantles’ breakfast buffet runs every day until 10:30am and offers eggs cooked to order, bacon and sausage, fruit, cereal, a granola station, and hot beverages.

If you slept in and can’t wait to hit the slopes, make a quick stop at Bolacco Café—located across from the Sundance Express chairlift—and grab a breakfast sandwich or pastry to eat on the chairlift in the brisk winter air.

Celebrate at Après and Ales

Is there anything better than an après skiing celebration to cap the perfect day on the slopes? On Opening Day, Sun Peaks Resort throws their annual “Après and Ales” party at Masa’s Bar and Grill, located in the Village Day Lodge. Bring your lift or season pass, (along with two forms of identification,) and enjoy a free 10-ounce pull of Granville Island Brewing’s Lions Winter Ale.

Described as the “perfect winter comfort brew,” the subtle hints of vanilla, cocoa, and caramel in Lions Winter Ale are sure to sink you into a state of post-carving relaxation.

Get Mountain Formal at the Sun Peaks Annual Firefighters’ Charity Gala

With tired legs and a happy heart, make your way to the Sun Peaks Annual Firefighters’ Charity Gala to dance the night away and support two great causes. In the evening of Opening Day, the Sun Peaks Firefighters’ Society is hosting the gala in support of Adaptive Sports Sun Peaks and the Sun Peaks Mountain Rescue Society.

The evening features a cocktail hour, a three-course meal with wine, live and silent auctions, and music from rock band Serious Dogs. Dress code is “mountain formal,” and tickets must be purchased in advance. Contact the Sun Peaks Grand Hotel & Conference Centre to reserve your spot, and get ready to shake a leg on the dance floor!

Enjoy the Mountain with More Than Skiing

While alpine skiing is the main attraction of Opening Day, there is plenty more to explore at Sun Peaks Resort. If enough snow coats the ground, strap on a pair of snowshoes (rentals available, or bring your own), pick up a complimentary trail map, and wind your way through clusters of towering pine trees.

Other snowy activities including Nordic skiing on the 37 kilometres of impeccably groomed trails, renting a fat bike to pedal the multi-use trails, and relaxing on a horse-drawn sleigh ride that glides through the village and climbs up a gentle ski run to reach a scenic viewpoint.

For those less inclined to venture outdoors, indulge your tastebuds with a delicious meal at one of the more than 20 dining establishments within Sun Peaks village, spend an afternoon shopping at one of the many boutiques and stores, or book a day at the Sun Peaks Spa at Kookaburra Lodge for a day of luxury.

Like Christmas, Opening Day only comes once a year. Don’t miss it! Book a stay at Sun Peaks for opening weekend and enjoy the thrill of carving your first turns of the season.