Welcome aboard the Mount Snow Takeover! From January 9 to 11, we’ll be descending on one big, snowy mountain in Vermont for three days and two gaytastic nights of skiing, boarding, tubing, hot tubbing, dancing, drinking, and snow angel making. Here’s what you may be wondering:

TRAVELING:
1. What time are we leaving and from where? How do I get there?

  • BOSTON: Buses leave from this spot by Christian Science Center at 6:30pm sharp on Friday, January 9. It's between the Prudential and Symphony stops on the E Line (MBTA Green Line) and a short walk from the Massachusetts Avenue stop on the Orange Line. The #1 bus also runs from Cambridge down Mass. Ave. You'll be back in Beantown by 8:30pm on Sunday, January 11.
  • PHILLY: Plan to be at 30th Street Station at this spot, on Friday, January 9 at 1:30pm to catch the bus as it arrives from DC. The 30th Street Station is served by the Market-Frankford Line as well as SEPTA trolleys and buses. You'll be back in Philly around 9pm on Sunday, January 11
  • DC Buses will depart from 1000 10th Street, NW (as close as we can get to the Metro Station stop) at 11:00am on Friday, January 9. You'll be back in DC around 11:30pm on Sunday, January 11. 

2. Will we be dropped off at the same locations on Sunday night?
Yup!

3. Is there enough room on the buses for my equipment and bags?
Yes. The buses are charter buses with A LOT of storage space underneath. You won’t be able to squish your big suitcases in the seating area, but we'll have no trouble fitting everything in the storage compartments below.

4. Will there be outlets on the bus to charge phones?
The Philly & DC bus has three outlets you can use in case things get dicey, but we'd recommend bringing an extra power source if you have one. No outlets on the Boston bus.

5. Should I bring food on the bus?
DC & Philly peeps should definitely bring snacks for the longer bus ride. We recommend Peanut M&Ms because we'll probably snatch some from you. Boston folks, your ride is closer to three hours, so if you think you'll get hangry that quickly, pack some treats! Good news: Snow Barn, Mount Snow's bar/restaurant, is keeping its kitchen open just for us until 11:30pm. Expect pizza and sandwiches. Nomz.

LODGING:
1. Where’s my lodge in relation to the mountain?
If you’re staying at the Grand Summit, you’re right at the base of the mountain. If you’re staying at the Snow Lake Lodge, you’re a quick shuttle ride away.

2. What do I do with my gear on Sunday after I check out at 11am and want to go to the mountain?
A few of our staff rooms at the Snow Lake Lodge will remain open so you can drop off your things for the day on Sunday. The front desk will also be happy to hold them for you until we depart. If you're at the Grand Summit Hotel, simply bring your bags to the front desk and they'll valet them for you. 

3. How often does the shuttle come to Snow Lake Lodge? 
The shuttle is on a continuous loop arriving about every 15 minutes.

4. How far is my lodge from dancing?
Both lodging options are a 4-minute walk to Snow Barn, where we’ll be dancing on Friday and Saturday nights. Here are walking directions from Snow Lake. And here are walking directions from Grand Summit. Insert dancing lady emoji here.

5. What if I want to see where everything is at the resort?
Well then it's your lucky day, cuz we've got a downloadable map for you riiiiight here.

WINTER ACTIVITIES:
1. I didn’t get my lift / equipment rental / lesson tickets!! How can I get them?
Early ticket sales have closed, but we'll show you where to get tickets at the mountain.

2. When will I get my pre-ordered lift tickets?
Pre-ordered lift tickets will be handed out when you check in at your hotel. If one of your roommates checks in early, we'll make sure your lift tickets are in your room or being held by a staff member.

3. What about tubing? And snow shoeing? And other winter stuff?
If you're interested in other winter activities like snow tubing, snowshoeing and cross country skiing, you can pick up passes for those at Mount Snow—reservations aren’t required. All of the information for those activities can be found here. If you want to go snowmobiling, we’d suggest you make a reservation in advance. Find out about all of that here.

4. I heard there was hot tubbing. True or false?
True. Both lodges have hot tubs. Aww, yeah.

ENTERTAINMENT:
1. I just wanna dance! That’s happening right?
So do we and yes, yes, yes! On Friday and Saturday nights, you’ll get into Mount Snow’s nightclub, Snow Barn, for free. When you arrive at your rooms, you'll find snazzy passes to get you in the door sans-cover-charge. You can see their lineup of musical prowess by going hereIt'll be a hoot! (Groan.) 

On Saturday night, we're also joining forces with OutRyders, New England's LGBT ski and snowboarding club, to party for a cause from 7 to 9pm. Proceeds will benefit the Pride Center of Vermont. The Vermont Gay Tourism Association is promoting the event, so expect to meet #VermontGays. Like, all of them. Tickets are normally $30, but because we're awesome, we can get you in for $10 at the door (or $25 if you want to hit up the all-you-can-eat pizza buffet). Plus, San Francisco-based queer pop artist Zee will be in attendance along with Penny Annalise who's emceeing the event. There are even rumors of a high heels lip sync competition. Heels will be provided for the lucky few who win the chance to participate... You're welcome.

2. Are we going to Apres Ski?
Are unicorns magic? Yes. We’ve put together an entire schedule for you that will include apres-ski spots, pre-game spots, and dance party departure times. Scroll all the way down to see when and where everything is taking place.

PREPARATION:
1. I don’t know what to pack.
Everyone does things differently, but here’s an idea for first-timers:

  • If you’re going skiing or boarding, you’ll probably want three layers: long underwear and a light turtleneck as a base layer, a thick fleece sweater and pants for the mid-layer, and snow pants and jacket to cover everything up.
  • Don’t forget wool/fleece socks, gloves, goggles, and of course, underwear.
  • When you’re not on the slopes, you’ll want a hat and boots to stomp around. You’ll also want something to wear out to the bar on Friday and Saturday nights!
  • And, perhaps most importantly, don’t get caught without a bathing suit for the hot tub!

2. Where can I get the 2015 T-shirt?
The ski trip T-shirt, long sleeve shirt, and hoodie are now available, and they're fabulous. Pick 'em up here, but just be aware that January orders may not arrive before you leave for the trip.

3. Will there be a GroupMe group?
Always. And forever. If you don’t already have that group communication app, download it here. Then you'll want to join the group here. Keep in mind that while this communications platform is magical, it loves to suck up phone batteries. If you need to turn notifications off temporarily, here's a blog post that explains how to do that.

4. What if I have questions that you didn’t answer?
That’s easy! Just email Ashley at ashley@thewelcomingcommittee.com. Her carrier unicorns are on holiday, so electronic communication is best at this time.

TWC SKI TRIP PARTNERS:
1. I heard there were cool brands handing out cool stuff. True or false?
True! We've got four awesome organizations on board this year giving out everything from hangover cures and chocolate bars to helmets and headphones. 

2. Whoa. Who are the partners? And how can I find out more?
We're so happy you asked! Here's a list...

Bern Unlimited
Website / Instagram / Twitter

First Aid Shot Therapy
Website / Instagram / Twitter

Narragansett Beer
Website / Instagram / Twitter

Taza Chocolate
Website / Instagram / Twitter

3. Can I love them on all of the insta-book-snap-tweet interwebs?
Duh. Just click the links above to tell them how much you love them.
 

THE SCHEDULE:
Friday, January 9th
8:00pm: Philly and DC arrive! Check in at each hotel and head to your room!
9:00pm: Relax / grab food and drinks at Harrimon's (Grand Summit) or Walt's Pub (Snow Lake Lodge)
9:30pm: Boston bus arrives! Check in at each hotel and head to your room!
10:00pm: Meet in your respective hotel lobbies and head over to Snow Barn for Mini-GQB #1

Saturday, January 10th
7-10am: Grab breakfast (included at Snow Lake Lodge but not Grand Summit)
8am-4pm: Ski, snowboard, snow tube, snow shoe, hot tub, sauna, nap, drink, all the things
3-5pm: Apres-Ski Drinks @ Cuzzins (here's a map in case you need it)
5-7pm: Free time / relax / dinner
7-9pm: Apres Apres party with Outryders at Station Tap Room (map)
9:00pm: Snow Barn for Mini-GQB #2

Sunday, January 11th:
7-10am: Grab breakfast (included at Snow Lake Lodge but not Grand Summit)
Before 11am: Check out and throw your bags in one of the designated late check-out rooms
8am-2pm: Philly and DC skiing, boarding, tubing, hot tubbing, etc.
2:30pm: Philly & DC peeps grab their bags and head to the buses 
(meet in the parking lots/where you got dropped off)
3:00pm: Philly & DC head home
8am-4pm: Boston skiing, boarding, tubing, hot tubbing, etc.
2:00-3:45pm: 
Apres-Ski Drinks @ Cuzzins for one last hurrah!
4:30pm: Boston peeps grab their bags and head to the buses (meet in the parking lots/where you got dropped off)
5:00pm: Boston heads home