28/03/2011 | by Anna Langer
The Burton US Open Snowboarding Championships, held at Stratton Mountain Vermont every March, has been home to the best competitive riding for 29 consecutive years – longer than any other snowboard event in the world. And this year’s Open, taking place March 7-13, is shaping up to be all that and more. With nearly three decades of snowboard history and tradition to claim, the 2011 US Open will be the best ever, and this year, it features a festival vibe that includes a weekend full of live music, parties, free giveaways, great food and good times…and of course the chance to see the best snowboarders in the world compete live.
Here’s a sneak peek of what’s new at the 2011 Burton US Open, presented by MINI.
New Dates & Competition Schedule
Traditionally held the third weekend of March, the US Open is one week earlier this year from March 7-13 at Stratton Mountain Resort in Vermont. Also new, semi-finals for both halfpipe and slopestyle will take place on different days than the finals, giving spectators another two days of killer competition to watch. Here’s a breakdown of the competition schedule:
Wednesday, March 9 – Slopestyle Semi-Finals
Thursday, March 10 – Halfpipe Semi-Finals
Friday, March 11 – Slopestyle Finals and Rail Jam Finals
Saturday, March 12 – Halfpipe Finals
Sunday, March 13 – Junior Jam
New Halfpipe, Slopestyle & Rail Jam Locations
The halfpipe and slopestyle have moved down the hill towards the sponsor village at the Sun Bowl base area of Stratton Mountain, making it easier than ever for fans to see their favorite riders throw it down live. The Friday night Rail Jam will be in the main base area of Stratton with some brand new features like a bridge and tunnel combo, double quarterpipes, an urban wallride and of course…rails.
As if the riding won’t be entertaining enough, this year, the US Open will once again feature two free live concerts. On Friday after the Rail Jam, Flosstradamus will play a free show in the main base area of Stratton. Flosstradamus, the oft-mentioned Chicago DJ duo comprised of J2K (Josh Young) and Autobot (Curt Cameruci), has been dominating the party scene nationwide with their tag-team DJ sets (3 turntables, 2 mixers) for over 5 years. In addition, right after halfpipe finals on Saturday afternoon, Swedish New Wave band ‘The Sounds’ will play a free show at the Sun Bowl base area. With an avid following and three acclaimed records, ‘The Sounds’ are releasing a new album called ‘Something To Die For’.
New Sponsor Village and Festival Atmosphere
The sponsor village takes on a whole new look and layout to embrace a festival atmosphere. Sponsors and the general public alike are encouraged to partake in the scene with cultural food, interactive games and worldly-branded tchotchkes. From tie-dye stations to a feast of culinary delights, there’s plenty for riders to enjoy at the US Open sponsor village.
New Burton Product to Test Ride & Win
Also on deck at this year’s Open, the public can test ride 2012 Burton hardgoods for free at the demo tent in the sponsor village – all that’s needed is a credit card and photo id. And when riders are done checking out next winter’s gear, they can also get a taste of Burton Spring by heading to the Burton tent for a chance to win fresh new 2011 Burton Spring/Summer t-shirts and bags.
For the first time ever, car manufacturer MINI will be at the US Open as the presenting sponsor of the Burton Global Open Series (BGOS). For fans attending the US Open, MINI will offer test drives and onsite activities in the sponsor village. For competitors, MINI created a new award that’s in line with the carmaker’s ‘Creative Use of Space’ philosophy. The Creative Use of Space Award is worth a total of $50,000 that will be shared by the best male and female rider who have shown creativity and progression throughout the BGOS series. Everyone is encouraged to vote for the rider that embodies the Creative Use of Space Award at www.facebook.com/MINI under the Burton tab. Also, MINI will give away two new cars at the US Open, one to each of the 2011 Burton Global Open Series Champions.
Nokia is also new to the US Open. At Stratton, Nokia will continue to work with Burton pro riders who are testing out the kit for the Nokia N8 Smartphone that can track air time, heart rate and much more on the device. For the first time ever, the public will also have the chance to test out the kit and see the results of the project so far. To find out more, check out pushsnowboarding.com.
And it’s all FREE
As always, one thing that isn’t new is that access to the US Open is free, so fans can watch some of the best riders and snowboarding in the world at no charge.
If you can’t make it to Stratton, check out four days of live webcasts starting March 9-12 on burton.com. The US Open will also air on ESPN2 on March 13 at 4:30 p.m. EST.
Be on the look out for a confirmed US Open rider list coming out this week. For more information on the US Open, head to opensnowboarding.com. Or follow our line at facebook.com/burtonsnowboards and twitter.com/burtonsnowboard