As the days warm up, chances are your nearest ski area will be throwing a celebratory springtime bash, where you can kick back on a sundeck, sip margaritas, and heckle the pond skimmers. Here are a few parties that come with our highest recommendation:
Sun Valley, Idaho, March 14-18; sunvalley.com
They make vodka outta potatoes, y'know. Sun Valley markets this bash to twentysomethings, so expect cheap lodging deals, rocking concerts, and plenty of the kind of mayhem this place likes to avoid when the blue-hairs are in town.
Nub's Nob, Michigan, March 24; nubsnob.com
Show us your twin tips! Lake Michigan view at the top, pond-skimming shenanigans at the bottom, a steel-drum band on the deck, and those Motown or Chi-town winter blues miles and miles and miles behind you.
Attitash Bear Peak, New Hampshire, March 24-31; attitash.com
Fore! The last day of this multidimensional festival is an on-snow golf tournament (hint: don't use a white ball). Live music -- including Reggae Daze -- and bump and snowboard competitions feed the party vibe throughout the week.
SPRING SUMMIT CELEBRATION
Stowe, Vermont, weekends March 24-April 8; stowe.com
Three-round bout against Monday-morning headaches. Three consecutive weekends of live music, barbecues, contests, beer specials, and getting Coppertone smeared on your sunglasses. Skiing the Chin in shorts ain't recommended.
Breckenridge, Colorado, April 1-14; breckenridge.com
Darn close to the sun up here. In this inaugural rampage, Breck will be thumping for two straight weeks. Competitions (including the infamous Bump Buffet), DJ's spinning slopeside, late-night concerts, and arguably the year's best snow conditions.
BUDWEISER REGGAE FESTIVAL
Sugarloaf, Maine, April 6-8; sugarloaf.com
Jah steppin' on my ski, mon. Maine attracts some wicked good reggae -- last year, Bob's old cohorts the Wailers headlined this party. Never mind the pencil-necks from Southy trying to fake a Jamaican accent.
TIKI CUP/SILVER BELT WEEKEND
Sugar Bowl, California, April 7-8; sugarbowl.com
How, now, luau? They've been putting this show together since your grandpa was shredding the corn in his Hawaiian shirt. The Tiki Cup features palm-tree gates, grass skirts, volcanoes, thatch- roofed huts, skilebrities, and drinks with unpronounceable names.
Kirkwood, California, April 7-15; skikirkwood.com
What's that guy wearin', a sock? The Tahoe party pendulum swings into Kirkwood this week, with big-air and slopestyle spectacles, games, music, cheap food and booze, and a pond-skimming event where, rumor has it, nakedness is a virtue.
B, B, & B
Vail, Colorado, one mysterious day in mid April; vail.com
Locals only, eh? Then what are state cops doing here? Revealing the particulars of this annual underground word-of-mouth event would get us in serious trouble. So just trust us: Go. When? Where? What do the B's stand for? Ask a local.
Chamonix, France, May 7-9; grands-montets.com
Zee roof, zee roof, zee roof eez on fire! The wildest party in the Alps revs up when the lifts at Les Grands Montets shut down. This town has waytoo much adrenaline: Careful boarding that helicopter; you may be asked to jump out of it -- for fun!