Now that all the buzz has moved to the Winter X Games and the SIA Snow Show, Denver Big Air boosters and critics are taking stock. KieAnn Brownell, of the Metro Denver Sports Commission, which helped coordinate Big Air, tells the Denver Post the event was a success, but adds, "There's a chance that we did take a financial hit." The Post's Joanne Ditmer questions the social, environmental, and financial costs of building a $1 million ramp, packing it with snow, and then charging citizens to ooh and ahh at exhibitions happening within a public space.
Meanwhile in Aspen Thursday, Kaya Turski won the first X Games gold medal of the day in the women's skiing slopestyle event, and Shaun White showed off his world-class form during superpipe qualifying runs, notes the Post. Canadian Sarah Burke also won her fourth Winter X SuperPipe gold medal, beating reigning champ Jen Hudak (via ESPN). Back in Denver, the annual SIA Snow Show, the largest snow-sports industry trade conference in the world, opened yesterday. KUNC points out ski gear and apparel sales are up to $3.2 billion this year despite the recession.