Audi FIS Ski World Cup returns to Killington Thanksgiving weekend

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KILLINGTON — For the second year in a row the region will welcome some of the world's top skiers for the Audi FIS Women's Ski World Cup, to be held at Killington Ski Resort between Nov. 24 and Nov. 26.

The World Cup, which drew 30,000 spectators over two days in 2016, will once again feature slalom (a ski race down a winding course) and giant slalom competitions. Throughout the weekend the Resort will also be offering a number of free concerts and film screenings, with the band Dispatch headlining a free concert on Saturday, Nov. 25.

"We are thrilled Dispatch will headline our full weekend of World Cup Race festivities," said Mike Solimano, President and General Manager of Killington Resort. "We hope the public comes out to enjoy the concerts, movie premiers, opening parades, fireworks, and our unique dining experiences and autograph signings, in addition to the women's giant slalom and slalom races."

Before the 2016 World Cup, also hosted by Killington, an alpine World Cup skiing event had not been held in Vermont since the 1978 competition, held at the nearby Stratton Mountain Resort. Nearly 90 athletes, representing 20 countries, are slated to race in the slalom and giant slalom competitions, and races will be broadcasted to an audience of 2.1 million people in 60 countries. Killington will allow the general public to watch the competition from free general admission areas, though premium grandstand tickets are also available. The Resort says that they anticipate approximately 12,000 spectators for the event.

"We are very excited that Vermont will once again be welcoming many of the world's best skiers and their fans to Killington," said Vermont Department of Tourism and Marketing Commissioner Wendy Knight. "We can think of no better way to kick off the winter snow sports season in the Green Mountain State than with the Audi FIS Women's Ski World Cup in Killington."

Two free concerts will be held during the World Cup as well. Kicking off the weekend is Woodstock's Troy Ramey, who appeared on season 12 of "The Voice" and will perform on Friday.

Dispatch, a band that formed at Middlebury College, will take to the stage on Saturday Nov. 25 for a free concert at Killington's K-1 Base area. Dispatch is returning to the road with their first national tour in five years, and their performance at Killington is their only scheduled appearance in the state of Vermont.

"Combining top-notch entertainment with one of the world's most premier ski racing events makes for an amazing, party-like weekend at Killington for families and fans of all ages," Solimano said.

Two separate movie premiers will also be hosted a Killington's Snowshed Base Lodge over the weekend, including new releases from Teton Gravity Research and Warren Miller Entertainment. Proceeds from these showings will benefit the Pico Ski Club and the Killington Ski Club respectively.

The World Cup Expo Village, located at the K-1 Base Area, will feature over 40 unique sponsors, ranging from artisan Vermont craft and food vendors to the latest ski industry hardware and technology companies.

Opening parades on both Saturday and Sunday will feature youth racers marching with their ski clubs carrying participating nations' flags' culminating in the finish area to kick off the competition each day. The resort expects more than 1,000 youth racers over the weekend, with Vermont ski clubs featured on Saturday and ski clubs from across the Northeast on Sunday.

For more information, and a full schedule for the weekend, visit http://www.killington.com/site/to-do/World-Cup.

Reach Cherise Madigan at cmadigan@manchesterjournal.com, or by phone at 802-490-6471.

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