Thursday marked the first day of the 2014 SIA Snow Show in Denver, Colorado. At the end of the day, when all Snow Show-ers were finished mingling, booth partying, and decompressing from a hard day’s work, they flocked to the ArtHaus at 3334 Larimer Street for the 2nd annual Freeskier photo exhibit to benefit the Sarah Burke Foundation. This party was slightly out of the ordinary in comparison to the typical Freeskier party, taking place in a gallery setting; the rowdy behavior Freeskier fans are used to was thus reserved for the after party at nearby Meadowlark bar, hosted by Orage.
As snow fell upon the Mile High City, Tender Belly posted up in the parking lot to roast a whole pig as well as provide hungry party goers with tasty bacon sliders and bratwursts, and Pabst Blue Ribbon brought some much needed refreshments. A selection of photos from Freeskier sixteenth volume were up for auction, and the bidding wars were intense at times. Guests who didn’t feel like shelling out a couple of hundred bucks on photos had the opportunity to purchase a Sarah Burke poster and facemask (provided by Phunkshun Wear Facemasks) combination for $50.
The real motivation for the gathering, besides having a few laughs with old friends, however, was the celebration of the life of one of skiing’s most beloved figures, Sarah Burke. Michael Gadlin, co-owner of the ArtHaus, was gracious enough to put together a collage, utilizing clippings from Freeskier’s Sarah Burke remembrance issue, forming one of our most favorite portraits of Burke. Gadlin named the piece, “Grace and Humility,” after an article that appeared in the issue.
And as I gazed upon the hordes of party goers who had gathered to show their respect for Sarah, it couldn’t have been more evident that Burke’s influence has an almost infinite reach, touching the entire ski industry in some way. At one point Michael Spencer, Sarah’s longtime friend and agent, thanked everyone at the party for their ongoing support for Sarah and the Sarah Burke Foundation, and their commitment to ensuring Sarah’s legacy lives on.
If you were able to attend or even if you couldn’t, take a look at some of the photo highlights from one of our favorite events of the year, and remember to take time each day you’re out skiing to #CelebrateSarah.