High Country holidays: Keystone Neighbourhood Company and Copper Mountain Resort to light Christmas trees this weekend | SummitDaily.com

High Country holidays: Keystone Neighbourhood Company and Copper Mountain Resort to light Christmas trees this weekend

With Thanksgiving in the rearview mirror, it's time for Summit County to turn its sights to the next holiday: Christmas. The first wave of winter festivities begins this weekend at Keystone and Copper Mountain resorts.

In Copper's Center Village, the party at Burning Stones Plaza begins at 6 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 23, with free hot chocolate, candy canes, holiday headbands, Santa hats and DJ Landry. Then at 6:30 p.m. Mr. and Mrs. Claus ride down the slopes in the annual parade of Pisten Bully Snowcats to visit with all the young boys and girls. The yearly event has been going on for over 15 years.

"This is the only photo opportunity we provide with Santa at Copper," said Taylor Prather, spokeswoman for the resort.

To close out the celebrations, Copper will shoot fireworks into the air at 8 p.m.

However, fun continues the following day at 2:30 p.m. at Center Village with a free, four-part concert featuring pop artist Miles Arnell, country singer/songwriter Max Camp, DJ Steve Powers and an unknown special guest. The artists have performed with acts such as Nelly, Avicii, Florida Georgia Line and others.

If you can't make it to Copper for the photo op and pyrotechnics, then pencil in the time to visit Keystone's Warren Station on Saturday for face painting, crafts, kettle corn, hot chocolate and more at The Keystone Neighbourhood Company's sixth annual Welcome Winter Family Carnival. The event starts at 3 p.m. with Chris Thompson and Coral Creek playing original bluegrass songs as guests treat themselves to mocktails, cocktails, "Welcome Winter" mixers and beer. Featuring Bill McKay of Leftover Salmon and Grammy Award-winning fiddle player Luke Bella, Coral Creek will also cover songs by The Band, Grateful Dead, Peter Rowan and others.

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Meanwhile, the weekly Kidtopia parade hits River Run Village at 4 p.m. Children are welcome to participate and walk with Keystone's mascot Riparoo. Kids that want to join in should meet by the River Run Gondola around 3:45 p.m.

"It's also fun to watch and there are great viewing spots throughout River Run Village," said Maja Russer, director of events and marketing for The Keystone Neighbourhood Company.

Shortly thereafter the Summit High School choir will sing Christmas carols as Mountain Top Cookie Shop doles out free cookies. Make sure to bring your camera as Santa will be available for visits from 4:15-5:30 p.m. The evening will then conclude with fireworks viewable from River Run at 7 p.m.

Tree time

Both Keystone and Copper will light Christmas trees during their respective events. Copper's aspen trees in front of the Incline Bar & Grill will be lit with the help of Mr. and Mrs. Claus at 6:40 p.m. on Friday in Center Village.

On Saturday at Keystone's River Run Village a 30-foot tree from Bailey will be decked out and illuminated at 5:15 p.m. The Keystone Neighbourhood Company will also be handing out special holiday hats. Though winter-related events are happening this weekend, the tree will stay up in the village through New Year's so out of towners have plenty of time to see it.

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