This article was published on December 11th, 2019
Well, homos: another year full of pride events has come and gone, with the completion of the final Pride event of the year: Peak Pride SilverStar. This baby-faced pride festival is the newest kid on the Pride circuit, having just thrown its inaugural Pride, which was a smashing success. Peak Pride SilverStar 2019 was an incredible way to end the year, full of pride festivals, feeling gay and bright.
SilverStar Mountain Resort, in stunning ski country within the southern interior of British Columbia, is a colorful village and amazingly beautiful resort. Held December 6-8, the inaugural Peak Pride Festival just held the first of the 2019/2020 ski season and the last Pride festival of 2019. To kick off its first year, Peak Pride SilverStar was completely free to the public.
“Peak Pride at SilverStar was a huge success,” said Dustyn Baulkham, executive producer at Rebellious Unicorns, the organizers of Peak Pride events. “The mountain welcomed us with open arms and the locals were so excited about the drag show at our wipeOUT party. They were excited that we had a line up out the door of people trying to get in and people asking when the drag queens will be back.”
Earlier in the week, before Peak Pride SilverStar kicked off, resort staff participated in inclusivity training. This is an important new element for host locations of Peak Pride events. It teaches staff about inclusivity, and its important in the hospitality and tourism industry, but internally and externally.
“SilverStar invested in LGBT2Q+ Inclusion Training from the Canadian LGBT Chamber of Commerce for over 50 of their staff that helped them to better understand the LGBT2Q+ community,” Baulkham said. “Our partnership with the Canadian LGBT Chamber of Commerce and Western Diversification is bringing more of this inclusion training to the mountains to make them more welcoming to the LGBT2Q+ community 365 days a year.”
Peak Pride SilverStar weekend kicked off with an exclusive free screening of the queer documentary film, Alone in the Game. The documentary features prominent queer professional athletes in the US and Canada, giving insight into the progress made in the professional sports world for queer people. Very fitting for a Pride event at a ski resort, Alone in the Game created a lot of discussion throughout the weekend at the social events.
On Friday night, the Welcome Party social gathering at the Red Antler was a dancing, mingling, meet and greet party welcoming everyone to Peak Pride SilverStar. Boff the DJ, known from Sydney to Vancouver, spun great dance hits all night long, packing the dance floor. Curious people, mostly mountain staff showed up to see what Peak Pride is all about. They were impressed and were set on inviting other staff for the big Saturday night wipeOUT party.
Saturday people slept in, went skiing, tubing, snowmobiling, and enjoyed the mid-mountain village. Saturday afternoon was the Mountain Parade. Guests met at 2:15pm at the top of the Comet Express and at 2:30pm, descended to the village. A commemorative group photo was taken by all in spirit of the new pride event. Later, the Apres ski was at The Den. This was a great event for people to get to know each other and meet new people.
Saturday night was the largest PeakPride wipeOUT event in the history of the event series. Over 250 people, mainly locals and allies, attended event, hosted at the Red Antler. Ella Lamoureux and Freida Wales put on three numbers each, which the completely full room devoured.
Ella and Freida put on Christmas-themed drag performances and stayed afterwards to mingle, get photos, and take selfies. The new Peak Pride photo booth was very popular both nights and will become a staple addition to all Peak Pride events throughout this season.
Before heading home, people met at The Den for Sunday Brunch, with mimosa’s, coffee and Bailey’s, and avocado toast. New friends and old gathered to discuss the events of the weekend, say their goodbyes.
Snowbird Lodge was the host hotel throughout the weekend for Peak Pride visitors. One of the newest properties at SilverStar, it sits at the village edge, right on the ski slopes. Each unit offers a private balcony hot tub, full kitchen, living room, and bedroom. Peak Pride guests were just steps away from all of the events and activities, making it the perfect on-mountain accommodation. v
Peak Pride is the fastest expanding gay ski weekend festival, focused on inclusive, social events, skiing and snowboarding, featuring regional talent, and hosted at western-Canadian independent ski resorts. It’s not a circuit party weekend; it’s about bringing the community together. The event series attracts the LGBT community from across Western Canada, the Pacific North West, and has seen visits from as far away as Ontario.
The next Peak Pride is at Red Mountain, near Nelson, January 2-5, Sun Peaks, near Kamloops, February 26 – March 1, and Big White, near Kelowna, April 1-5.
Check out more photos from Peak Pride SilverStar: