Winter in the Canadian Shield is beautiful, badass, and worth celebrating. This snowy season, we’re getting behind winter by bringing our beer to ski hills in the region, be it a music festival at Falcon Ridge Ski Slopes in Manitoba, a featured beer release with Loch Lomond in Thunder Bay, or down-home parties at Mount Evergreen, Kenora. We at Lake of the Woods Brewing Company like to make it lake time, even when the lakes freeze over, and the wind brings frostbite to our cheeks.
Earlier in January, we spent the weekend pouring our beer in a brand new yurt at Falcon Ridge Ski Slopes for their annual Snowdance Festival. The weekend was jam-packed with live music and winter activities, such as skijoring behind horses, curling on the lake, a ski-in coffee hut, shinny, and even a vintage snowmobile race… where I may have placed 4th! The festival sells out in under 3 minutes and was recently featured in an eight-page spread in Enroute magazine. It’s certainly a festival we could get behind – so much so, that we hosted the Thursday night of Snowdance right in our Taproom! The evening show featured The Garrys, Soda Pony, and 3Peat, and got us in the mood for the coming weekend’s entertainment.
We like to make it lake time, even when the lakes freeze over, and the wind brings frostbite to our cheeks.
Bringing our beer to events that are already kickin’ at ski hills is our thumbs-up to all things slopeside. Over at Mount Baldy in Thunder Bay, our flagship beers are available all winter, and we’ll be working with them on their Mountain Meltdown to wrap up the season. At each of the hills we work with, the season-ender is a riot, and usually includes a slush cup, where skiers and riders try to make it through a huge pool of icy water at the base of the hill – a cause for laughs, and an ideal time to have good beer on hand. To carry on the list of ski-hill collaborations, Shredtopia at Mount Evergreen features a night of live music, moonlight dancing, fireworks, midnight cross-country skiing, and downhill races (speed radar makes it the real deal). Yes please! Then, coming up in March, LOWBrewCo is proud to be co-sponsoring the Falcon Ridge FLOPPET with North Face. The FLOPPET is a long distance cross-country ski race where a mid-race beer-garden detour is totally ok! Sore muscles are rewarded after the race with a sauna and a through-the-ice polarbear dip.
One more recent ski hill collaboration we are especially excited about is our Oatmeal Blonde Ale made with Loch Lomond, called Old Joe’s Back Trail Ale. Old Joe is said to be one of the first employees at the hill, shredding the runs since the early 1950s. There may be no better way to honour a dedicated member of their team than naming a silky smooth blonde ale after the guy, to be enjoyed by loyal observers of the aprés ski tradition.
It’s a blast riding the winter dream with the resorts of our boreal back yard. There’s no need to hibernate with so much going on at these mightly little hills!