By Kade Krichko, POWDER Magazine --
The biggest night in skiing went off with a bang Friday, as some of the most legendary names in skiing walked the red carpet with a raucous crowd of ski faithful for the 14th Annual Powder Awards in Salt Lake City. Throngs of powder hounds packed out The Depot in downtown Salt Lake to celebrate the best ski cinematographers and athletes in the business, and you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who went home disappointed.
It was an evening that belonged to Sweetgrass Productions, the avant-garde film company that brought us the psychedelic free ride film Valhalla in 2014. The crew took home the Best Editing award and then won the crowned jewel of the night, Best Film. To highlight their historic occasion, the boys from Sweetgrass came out on stage nude, giving their acceptance speech in the buff to a packed house that included their mothers. Talk about some proud parents.
Other big winners on the night were Tim Durtschi, recipient of the Best Natural Air and Best Male Performance awards, and Elyse Saugstad, who won Best Female Performance. Whistler Blackcomb’s Pettit brothers walked away with a handful of hardwear as well, with Sean taking winning Best Manmade air and taking second in the Powder Poll, and Callum earning Best Line and Full Throttle honors.
In addition to the star-studded cast of award recipients, Powder assembled one of the most influential groups of skiers in history to present the trophies. Names like Scot Schmidt, the godfather of freeskiing, and Greg Stump, the most legendary ski filmmaker in freeskiing, were just a few of the presenters who made the video awards show an unforgettable hit.
“Holy smokes! What a show,” said Powder editor John Stifter. “From the amazing new venue in downtown Salt Lake, to the guest presenters like Scot Schmidt, Daron Rahlves, Greg Stump, and Wendy Fisher, to the wild Sweetgrass crew taking home Movie of the Year, the biggest night in skiing lived up to the hype and more.”
The next day, athletes, cinematographers, and show-goers made their way up to Snowbird Resort for the first-ever Morning After celebration, replete with autograph signings, a barbeque, beer, and shredding at one of the most iconic resorts in North America. And to top it off, a fresh layer of snow provided the icing on the proverbial cake.
For pictures of this year’s Powder Video Award recipients and a full list of winners, visit Powdermag.com here.