Ski with Santa for festive cheer and deals across Western Canada
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Are you ready for the skiing Santa invasion? Every December, per tradition, Santa's costumed helpers hit the ski slopes. Red, white and beardy Santas shred it up, skiing and snowboarding all over Alberta and BC.
Why should you care about skiing with Santa? Good food, good cheer, free skiing (keep reading!) and tradition. Plus, it's a spectacle! And for those who dress up like Santa themselves, don't forget about the instant fame and bragging rights.
Where to ski with or be a skiing Santa
Here are some Western Canadian ski resorts where you can meet Santa Claus or become a skiing Santa during the next few weeks, and possibly get a free or cheap day of skiing out of it. As a bonus, we're also highlighting some other festive activities to check out for Christmas apres by the slopes.
Yes, Santa comes to Sun Peaks’ for its famous cinnamon buns here each year. So now you know! But next to Santa, who’s a more beloved figure in Canadian skiing than Nancy Greene, Olympic legend and founder of the famous Nancy Greene skiing racing league?
How many of us got an early start in skiing through the grassroots skiing program that bears her name? Ski with Santa, carol with Nancy Greene: pretty solid doubleheader!
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Lake Louise, Dec 24 - 25: Santa and Griff the Grizzly ski and share candy!
Two days of Santa appearances! Plus the Lake’s own Griff the Grizzly will be joining in. Listen for the jingling on the slopes to find them and, perhaps, score some candy to keep you fuelled up.
Big White, Dec 25: Meet Santa on the slopes of Big White
Christmas Day itself, Santa’s deliveries are done and he’s ready to rip Big White. Meetup is 10:30 at the Village Centre Mall (in the ski village) to ski a few laps with the jolly old elf. Be sure to wear your best Christmas sweater!
SilverStar, Dec 24: Dress up as Santa, ski for only $10
Castle drops its lift pass prices (and shortens its operating hours), to allow for all those obsessed skiers and snowboarders to get some laps and still be home for Christmas dinner.
Sunshine Village, Dec 25: Santa skis for $75
Following suit (pun intended), Sunshine Village is offering discounted lift passes on Christmas Day as well, for skiers and snowboarders who dress up as Santa.
Mount Norquay, Dec 25: Santa Shredz For Free
HO HO Holy free skiing! We promised it would come. If you garb up and go for it, you can ski free all day at Norquay on December 25, the ski hill’s gift to you. Take it from someone who’s skied in a mascot suit, you’ll be earning it… but having a good time too!
PRO TIP: if you’re going to go as Santa, you gotta go full out; meaning, head to toe, a Santa’s hat alone won’t do and you have to wear the suit as long as you’re riding lifts. But if you ask me, it’s well worth the price of admission.
Other holiday activities at Alberta, BC ski resorts
Are you a full on Grinch? No interest in Santa days? It’s okay, we (and the rest of the Whos in Whoville) still love you. Maybe this will help grow your heart a size or two.
From Boxing Day through New year’s eve, you can catch torchlight ski parades, a fire and ice show and fireworks at several resorts around Alberta and BC:
- Sunshine Village Torchlight Parades: Dec 25 & Dec 31 (New Year’s Eve)
- Mount Washington, Dec 26: Boxing Day Torchlight Ski & Fireworks
* night skiing is open for those who want to enjoy it all from the slopes
- Whistler: Dec 31: New Year’s Fire & Ice Show
- Norquay Dec 31: New Year’s Torchlight Parade
And of course, right after Christmas, the season continues with Jasper in January, now running for over 30 years, with deals on skiing at Marmot Basin, hotel discounts, foodie events, street parties and winter activities throughout the park.
Merry Shredmas, and schuss (or shralp) on this holiday season.
More holiday ski stoke!
Check out the stories below for more ways to get into the snow. And to stay tuned to all things winter in western Canada, join our enews.