Words by Eric Meyers.
Photos by Peter Morning.
Merriam-Webster defines pyrotechnics as "the art of making fireworks." Fitting enough, considering that Mammoth Mountain's annual fireworks festival--Night of Lights--has evolved into a weekend that is as much about the arts as it is the aerial display. From the hum of first chair on Friday to the last lap on Sunday afternoon there was so much going on around the hill that at times the need for a personal assistant to handle your schedule was quite apparent.
To start the big winter weekend, the wraps were taken off South Park and everyone's favorite sunny-day shred zone introduced itself to the season with a pair of jumps, followed by a rhythm section on the right holding more hidden transfers than a white collar criminal. On the left is a jib line featuring the first sightings of this year's Jamie Lynn Art Park. Later in the evening, Hyde Lounge would host the welcoming reception for Jamie Lynn, with prints lining the walls and bringing together a mix of alcoholics and art aficionados to hang with the legend.
Saturday was the official ribbon-cutting for the Art Park pop-up gallery at South. A welcoming crew featuring Jamie Lynn, Mammoth Unbound rail fabricator Dustin Del Giudice, and Art Park graphic designer Peter Stow hung out, talked to the crowd about the pieces and generally just stoked everyone out. This season's Art Park will remain as a pop-up gallery for another couple weeks, until the full debut can move to its permanent location a few trails over. For the time being, there are five pieces and four of them are brand new. A banked box, dual-level bleacher box, wallride and a zig-zag box all feature Jamie's distinct artworks, and the gallery rail at the bottom sports a custom painting that he created after being inspired by the surrounding beauty of Mammoth.
After everyone had jibbed and jumped to their heart's content, the masses headed down to Canyon Lodge to wait for nightfall and the start of the fireworks show. Now, if you haven't been before, you should know that Mammoth goes all-out for the Night of Lights, blasting off enough fireworks to make the Fourth blush at the size of its displays. After the fireworks, New Zealand's five coolest rock and rollers The Naked + Famous took to the main stage to play their spacey, ethereal tunes. A few members of the crowd, however, had themselves a bit too much party juice and starting throwing stuff at the band, causing them to shorten the show. Thanks a lot guys, do everyone a favor next time and stay home so the rest of us can appreciate the type of culture that clearly eludes you.
No one's evening was too abbreviated though, as everyone hopped in the gondola and headed down to Hyde once again for the afterparty featuring LA Riots and a decidedly carnival-like atmosphere inside. Be sure to make it up for New Year's Eve, because Mammoth proved this weekend that they definitely know how to throw a party.
For details about the next party, check out mammothmountain.com/newyears.