WHITEFISH, Mont. – Hundreds of spectators watched more than sixty-five contestants in the New Year’s Eve Rockin’ Rail Jam at Whitefish Mountain Resort on Friday, Dec. 31, which was immediately followed by a torchlight parade and professional fireworks show above the resort’s Upper Village.
Grooming and Fishbowl Terrain Park staff spent the days before the event building several terrain-park-style features. The competition was a jam format, meaning contestants could hit the features as many times during their allotted time slot as they cared to. The first skiers and riders kicked off the event just after dusk outside Ed & Mully’s slope-side restaurant.
Entrants in five amateur divisions were watched by a panel of judges who looked for difficulty of tricks performed, style, and execution. Open divisions for skiers and snowboarders offered stiffer competition from pro and semi-pro skiers and riders, with a $750 cash purse and a pair of Boone Skis up for grabs.
Winners of each amateur division were Danylle Hammett, Women Ski 8+; Parkin Costain, Boys Ski 8-12; Terry Wyman, Men Ski 13+; Hunter Lamereaux, Boys Snowboard 8-12; and Louis Geisez, Men Snowboard 13+. Costain, Lamereaux, and Geisez are all current members of the Whitefish Mountain Resort Freestyle Ski & Snowboard Team.
Open division winners were skier Ben Hills and 11-year-old snowboarder Jared Elston.
“It was a really sick setup,” said Elston after winning the open snowboard division and taking home part of the cash purse. “A big thanks to the park crew, my sponsors at Big Sky Board Sports, and my parents.”
Skier Terry Wyman was noted for throwing one of the best tricks of the night with a 450 on/270 off on the down box.
Between jam sessions, members of the audience were invited to participate in an obstacle course “Dash for Cash”, where one lucky runner won $100 in cash from Montana’s Bayern Brewing Company and its Face Plant Doppleweizen.
Events Production Supervisor Jason Forrest thanked the crowd for braving the cold at the awards ceremony following the competition.
“Look for these events to get even bigger and better in the future,” said Forrest.