HELENA, Mont., Dec. 19, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Montana's 2019-2020 winter season is abundant with festivities, anniversaries, adventures and local hospitality. Foodies can savor festive cuisine with new restaurant introductions and food and beverage festivals, while those looking to welcome in the New Year with a breath of fresh air can partake in some of the world's best skiing, adrenaline-spiking skijoring or outdoor winter carnivals. There are limitless ways to enjoy a Montana winter, but here are a few new and notable opportunities to celebrate the season across the state:
New & Notable Adventures, Events & Anniversaries
- Big Sky Resort has a full roster of events for the 2019-2020 ski season, including Snobar in January. This event will return for two weekends in 2020 and features an evening lineup of live music performances and a bar made of snow.
- Skiing is easier than ever this season at Big Sky Resort, thanks to new Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology that allows passes to automatically be scanned at mountain access points.
- 2020 marks the 40thNAIA National Women's Basketball Championships and the final year of the event being held in Billings. Montana's Trailhead helps elevate nearly 500 amazing athletes all vying with their teams for the National Championship title of Division I Basketball. The tournament is March 18-24, 2020.
- A favorite among locals and powder enthusiasts, Bridger Bowl Ski Area will celebrate their 65th birthday on January 10, 2020, with discounted passes, live music and more.
- To experience some of the country's best ice fishing and the culture around the sport, travel to Montana's Missouri River Country and Fort Peck Lake. The communities and businesses around the lake host annual competitions like the Hell Creek Marina Ice Fishing Tournament in February and 48 Hours of Fort Peck in March (pending ice conditions).
- Skijoring at Rebecca Farm will take place on December 28-29, 2019, offering an exciting winter event you won't want to miss. Watch and cheer skiers on as they are pulled by a horse and rider at high speeds through an obstacle course with jumps.
- The COOLEST party in Kalispell is coming to town on January 18, 2020. Frosty the Brewfest is a family-friendly event featuring great brews, food, music and fun.
- Indulge in the sweet taste of the season February 7, 2020 at Chocolate Affair. This walking event in downtown Kalispell includes over 30 Main Street businesses offering a variety of chocolate treats and shopping opportunities just in time for Valentine's Day.
- The 2019-2020 ski season marks the 60th anniversary of Red Lodge Mountain and the addition of this local favorite ski area to the Indy Pass. Additional snow-filled festivities planned for Red Lodge include the annual Winter Carnival taking place March 7, 2020.
- Compete or cheer on the competitors participating in the Yellowstone Rendezvous Race on March 7, 2020 in West Yellowstone, the western gateway to winter adventure in Yellowstone National Park.
- Following the excitement of the World Invitation Ski Joring competition January 25-26, 2020, the annual Whitefish Winter Carnival will take place February 7-9, 2020. This family-friendly event features a festive Main Street parade, ice-sculpting contest, kiddie carnival, torch-light ski parade and much more.
- Whitefish Tours & Shuttle offers new guide service options for the Whitefish area and Glacier National Park—ranging from half-day tours to multi-day excursions.
Notable Winter Itineraries & Road Trips
- As a basecamp to winter adventure, explore Billings further with itineraries focused on arts & culture or food & beverage. From the Yellowstone Art Museum to Montana's only walkable brewery district, the state's largest city serves up incredible cultural and culinary offerings year-round.
- Experience Yellowstone National Park during the quiet, ethereal beauty of the winter season. Gardiner is the first entrance to the country's first national park and the only entrance open to vehicle traffic year-round. Plan an adventure to Old Faithful or spend three perfect days between Gardiner and Yellowstone National Park exploring a breathtaking winter wonderland.
- This winter wonderland isn't just for skiers. Whether you're a family looking for the perfect snow day, an adventure enthusiast looking to carve out perfect powder runs or an arts & culture aficionado looking to explore this charming town, there's a winter itinerary for everyone in Kalispell.
New Lodging Properties and Major Renovations
- The Wilson Hotel opened in the summer of 2019 as the first four-star luxury hotel in the charming mountain community of Big Sky. Fill your day with cross-country and downhill skiing, fly-fishing or a snowcoach adventure in Yellowstone National Park before calling it a day in one of the 129 luxurious suites. The property is pet-friendly and offers a number of on-site amenities, including a ski lift guest shuttle to Big Sky Resort.
- Renovations at Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel in Yellowstone National Park are now complete, with the property open for the season as of December 15, 2019. Notable offerings for winter include out-the-door access to miles of groomed cross-country trails, a renovated bar with local offerings and piano performances and a variety of adventure packages in the park.
- My Place Kalispell recently opened on the north end of Kalispell, offering comfortable lodging less than an hour from Glacier National Park, and centrally located about 20 miles from Whitefish Mountain Resort in the north and Blacktail Mountain Ski Area in the south.
- Farmhouse Inn & Kitchen is the newest luxury bed & breakfast in downtown Whitefish. Awake refreshed for a snow-filled adventure and enjoy a farm-to-table breakfast—complete with organic baked goods and Czech pastries.
New Food and Beverage Offerings
- Exchange is the newly remodeled hub for gathering, shopping and dining in Big Sky Resort's Mountain Village. Renovations unveiled for the 2019-2020 ski season include a food hall with six new food concept stations, an outdoor deck with a fireplace for the ultimate après ski experience and a new bar.
- Union Hall Brewery recently opened on Main Street in downtown Bozeman, next door to Bozeman Spirits Distillery. The city's newest brewery pays tribute to the western history of the area, including honoring its namesake Union Hall—the first brewery to open in Bozeman in 1867.
- Après at the recently opened MontaVino, a cozy wine bar in downtown Kalispell offering a variety of wine and wine-based drinks, food and local event space.
- 1st Avenue Taphouse, Kalispell's "newest old hangout," offers a casual, comfortable tap house menu, Montana focused bar selection and live music in downtown Kalispell. Stop by for the Huckleberry Wings and a local brew after a snow day adventure.
- Stop by Fleur Bake Shop in downtown Whitefish for an indulgent, small-batch selection of French pastries; courtesy of Chef Whitney Brien.
New Flights/Additional Air Service
With a variety of seasonal and year-round direct flights, it's easier than ever to plan a trip to Montana's breathtaking winter landscapes and charming towns.
Access to Montana is a just a nonstop flight from current destinations that include Chicago, San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Seattle, Denver, Portland, Dallas-Fort Worth, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Minneapolis-St. Paul, New York, Atlanta, Houston, Detroit, Long Beach and Phoenix-Mesa.
Additional seasonal air service will be offered starting in 2020 from Detroit to Bozeman through Delta, from Minneapolis-St. Paul to Bozeman through Sun Country Airlines, from Philadelphia to Bozeman through American Airlines, from New York to Kalispell through American Airlines and from Los Angeles to Missoula through Alaska Airlines.
Find more information to plan your trip to snow-filled adventures in Montana at https://www.visitmt.com/things-to-do/winter-activities.html.
About The Montana Office of Tourism and Business Development (MOTBD)
MOTBD markets Montana's spectacular unspoiled nature, vibrant and charming small towns, breathtaking experiences, relaxing hospitality and competitive business climate to promote the state as a place to visit and do business. For more information, go to VISITMT.COM.
SOURCE Montana Office of Tourism and Business Development