In many ways, people that live in mountain towns are similar. We have transplanted ourselves into a community of open and accepting peers, who also happen to like using the power of gravity and chairlifts to hurtle downhill. But if there’s one thing you can take from Mountain Life, it’s that everyone has a story. We’ve interviewed countless people to hear what they have to bring to the table – and by virtue of the myriad of different experiences, everyone’s story is different.
Beth Freeman and Naheed Henderson have come up with an idea that blends both a love of mountain living and a passion for storytelling. Dubbed MTNStory, the series has showcased cancer survivor and former pro skier Alison Gannett and her crusade of healthy eating to combat the deadly disease, Lynsey Dyer and her many achievements in the ski community (culminating in the seminal Pretty Faces), Chuck Barfoot, the Godfather of snowboarding whose innovative ideas helped the sport progress and grow into the phenomenon it has become, and Ken Wylie, an adventurer for years before an avalanche changed his life – the only one pulled out alive in 2003 on an expedition with Craig Kelly.
“The stories are not as much about what they’ve accomplished rather how they navigated challenging and amazing experiences and how it has transformed their relationship with the mountains and the outdoors,” Freeman explained. “I thought this type of entertainment, an interview which is a conversation vs a speaker which is more of a presentation, was something that was really missing from Whistler, something a little more on the cerebral side but still entertaining and fun.”
The final show for the season is tomorrow night, at the Garibaldi Lift Company, where tickets are $10 at the door. The speaker is Josh Dueck, a name that is synonymous with the progression of the adaptive ski world. Passion, adventure, tragedy, inspiration, transformation, a front flip and a gold medal are all part of the Josh Dueck Story.
The night is different from your usual Friday night out in Whistler but certainly a remarkable change in pace, and Freeman agrees.
“The best part has been meeting some remarkable people and being so inspired by their willingness to share some very personal, sometimes shocking and always transformative experiences. Watching the audiences, riveted by these amazing stories, and leaving the event full of inspiration has been very rewarding.”