Wow friends. That was quite the trip. For those of you that stayed home this past weekend, your fellow Sternies made their way up to Stratton Vermont for the LSG Winter Getaway. This was my first ski trip at Stern, and while the bar was set pretty high from the stories my classmates had told me, damn did this trip deliver.
The trip began with a casual 5 hour bus ride out of Greenwich Village up to the Green Mountain Forest of Southern Vermont. As soon as the bus cleared the city limits of New York and we made it to the highway, my fellow riders quickly found their sea legs and began to walk around and socialize. Within an hour, the ride closer resembled Milano’s Bar than public transit. I learned a lot from that bus ride. I met new classmates, workshopped some truly groundbreaking entrepreneurial ventures, learned fun facts about John Mulaney and personal hygiene, and even received a chemistry lesson on personal lubricant. Oh my stars, was that an insightful bus ride. Really one to write home about, or maybe not.. guess I’ll just publish this on the internet.
Once we arrived the crowd was in high spirits. We checked into the Black Bear lodge at the foot of the mountain and disembarked into the cool mountain air. We had a lovely pasta dinner and hit the pregame. It’s amazing how many people you can fit in a hotel room when you put your mind to it. After a few more shots of fellowship and fun, the crew hit the town. The ski village of Stratton oddly resembled the Good Place, and as the night wore on it varied back and forth between seasons 1 and 2. There were three stories of the bar we landed in and as I ventured through the basement, first floor, and balcony, all I saw were frazzled tourists and mountain folk wondering where this crowd of gorgeous, smartass New Yorkers came from. I also somehow found myself in the bar’s storeroom at one point. Who knew that bars kept such a large stock of herbal tea? Only in Vermont.
Somehow we all managed to wake up early on Saturday and hit the slopes. With some incredible outfits to boot. For those that haven’t skied at Stratton, I highly recommend it. I am not a good skier, as I thoroughly proved by the end of the day, but Stratton truly offers runs to satisfy every level. I had friends who thoroughly enjoyed the bunny hill, particularly due to the futuristic(ish) lift tunnel. If skiing or snowboarding is not your thing, the snowmobiling and tubing will keep you entertained. Amazingly, it is possible to not hurt yourself at the mountain.
After the slopes we all purified ourselves in the cleansing waters of the hotel jacuzzi. Seriously, I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many people in a hot tub. The water level extended a few inches above the surrounding pool deck, and as small whirlpools formed on drains, we watched with wonder like sailors pining for the glow of the illuminated surface of choppy shores… And then ran outside to do shirtless snow angels. Never lose your innocence, kids.
Saturday night everyone put on their best pajamas, onesies, or nighttime apparel. The convention hall was filled with dragons, kangaroos, and a whole lotta flannel. I was very happy to gorge myself with bbq brisket, smoked turkey, and the occasional vegetable. We went back to our local bar and commandeered the balcony. I never knew how badly I wanted to see a dragon stand on a table and sing the backstreet boys, but I’m proud to say my dream came true. We made it back from the bar and found our way back to the hot tub. And that’s where my story will end.
I got my phone back from the front desk Sunday morning and against all odds, everyone made it back in one piece. Huge shout out to Mike Landivar and the LSG team. The trip truly wouldn’t have been the same without you, I can’t thank you enough. I highly recommend everyone attend next year’s Winter Getaway. Even if you’re scared of barreling down a mountain, just remember, a lack of confidence is just a misunderstanding of the way the world works. Get out there and send it.