Vail, Co-December 17, 2012–Blue Creek Productions, along with the support of Beaver Creek Resort, has created a daily family ceremony on the plaza of Beaver Creek, Colorado, running each afternoon from 3:30 until 7:30, December 22-January 5. Winterfest, created by Blue Creek director/owner/producer Brian Hall, literally draws families into each evening’s theatrical festivities through a series of events beginning with a children’s parade. Kids are drawn into the event, participating along the parade route at any point between the covered bridge to the ice skating rink at the center of the village. Using flags, theatrical instruments, props and costumes given to the children to use during the short walk, families become an integral part of the storytelling that then begins to take place. All children receive souvenir buttons to keep as mementos of their participation, creating a memorable experience that adds to the family’s vacation.
The parade sets the stage for an original fairy tale written by storyteller Brian Hall about a boy who discovers a mythical land beneath the ice, Wunderland, with characters who can join the audience only for a short time since they rely on cold temperatures to survive. All aspects of the early evening event build upon this specially crafted storyline, animating the Beaver Creek plaza’s dining, shopping and lodging area.
Ice sculptures in the shape of life-sized animals such as a polar bear and cub, penguins and other fascinating creatures are on display for viewing anytime, “coming alive” along the way when the parade kicks off the evening’s story, mingling with the families.
During this time, some children will have the opportunity to take on a bigger role in the production by actually joining the cast in what becomes a true full theatrical show, bringing the fairy tale to life. Local shopkeepers, workers and community members will join in, too, incorporating them in featured roles in the evening’s festivities.
The tale of Wunderland begins with a blue light shining up from the ice, attracting the attention of a boy who has strayed from his family who are viewing the irresistibly decorated windows of the jewel-box type stores along the plaza. He breaks the ice to investigate, allowing the creatures and characters to emerge and tell their stories. Live animal exhibits then join the show, including birds of prey such as Bald Eagles and Falcons. Special performances by groups such as the world-famous Denver Brass will also occur. The night culminates around two weekly themes incorporated into the story; the first week is “Elf Games” and the second is “Beaver Creek’s Got Talent.” The entire scripted, story-based experience includes an amphitheater/stage, props and special effects created just for the production, making the experience truly unique outdoor resort theatre.
Bringing the holidays to life for Beaver Creek guests, Blue Creek Productions owner/director/producer Brian Hall strives to create an annual tradition that families can plan on participating in year after year with numerous unique touch points such as a “Wish Staff.” Old Man Winter, dressed in full holiday regalia, brings various ribbons to children throughout the parade and show, inviting them to pick one, make a wish and tie it onto the wooden staff he carries, in the end placing the ribbons onto the centerpiece “Wish Tree,” ensuring their wish will come true. The impressions made upon the visitors and the community members will certainly last a life-time.