Photo: John Atkinson. Kick off the ski season at the Big Kicker on Saturday, November 23, from 5 to 10 p.m. at Mt. Ellen.

Thanks to plenty of recent natural snowfall and the hard work of snowmakers, Sugarbush Resort plans to open a day early for the 2019-20 winter season to both season passholders and Ikon passholders on Friday, November 22. For the first time in recent memory, the resort will offer terrain for all abilities with trails available off Valley House Quad, Gate House Express Quad, and Welcome Mat. The full list of available terrain includes Snowball, Spring Fling, Pushover, Lower Pushover, Slowpoke, Sugarbear Road and First Time. Slowpoke will also have several terrain park features on it.

After Friday’s passholder day, the resort will open to the public on Saturday, November 23. Lift hours on Friday will be 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will remain like that daily until more terrain opens.

Saturday evening, Sugarbush and neighboring Mad River Glen will be celebrating the winter kickoff with The Big Kicker, sponsored by Lawson’s Finest Liquids. Lawson’s, in addition to pouring their beer, will also be running a beer name contest for their new Sugarbush-themed beer. The party runs 5 to 10 p.m. in the Mt. Ellen Base Lodge. Celebrations are ramping up a notch this year with live music by Lyon’s Disciples, a full rail jam behind the base lodge with multiple features for all abilities, kids’ movies, food, drink and more. Kids and adults are welcome to bring their own ski or snowboard gear and try out the park outside. The event also includes community partners like Kelly Brush Foundation, Flyin Ryan Hawks Foundation, High Fives Foundation and Vermont Adaptive Ski & Sports, who will be accepting donations at the door as they continuing pushing forward with their capital campaign to build a new facility at Mt. Ellen.

For more information on current snow conditions visit and for more information on The Big Kicker visit