By Eva Potter
It’s June and you know what that means. It’s time to start planning to hit up all of the fantastic events and things to do in Ellicottville. Here are a few super fun events you’ll want to add to your summer to-do list.
Relay for Life, June 6
This year, Relay for Life of Cattaraugus County is celebrating its 25th year of remembering and honoring those who are fighting cancer, as well as loved ones who have passed on. The event begins at Ellicottville Central School at 11 a.m. and will be an experience you won’t soon forget. And, it isn’t too late to form a team, so grab your friends, family, co-workers, the letter carrier — you get the idea — and create a team of your own. Visit www.relayforlife.org/cattarauguscounty/NY.
Highlights of the event include the Opening Ceremony honoring an individual survivor, the Survivor Lap, Caregivers Lap, capped by the emotional Luminary Ceremony honoring those lost to cancer, as well as those who have won the battle along with their caregivers. There is also a special luncheon for cancer survivors.
Holiday Valley Cycling Weekend, June 5–7
Biking enthusiasts will once again gather at Holiday Valley for Cycle Ellicottville II. The event is geared to level 2 and 3 riders who regularly ride 30–60 or more miles. Cyclists will encounter rolling and some steeper hills while enjoying scenic routes around Holiday Valley in Cattaraugus County. The $289 per person cost includes lodging on Friday and Saturday nights, three guided road rides including a sag wagon, cycling clinics, light instruction, meals, social activities and a goody bag. Come and make new friends, explore some new routes and challenge yourself. The commuter rate is $199.
There is a limited number of spots, so call the Inn at Holiday Valley to reserve, 1-800-323-0020 or go to www.holidayvalley.com/cyclingweekend.
Cabana Party, June 19
Get psyched for the Holiday Valley Mudslide at the Friday night Cabana Party, 6–9 p.m. Everyone is invited to come, even if you’re not participating in the muddiest event of the year. There will be a chicken and rib barbeque, music by the Bleeding Hearts and drink specials at the brand new Cabana Bar. The pool will also stay open until 10 p.m.
Pick up your Mudslide race packet from 5–8 p.m. If you decide last minute, you can still register for the event that evening at the Overlook Terrace next to Holiday Valley Lodge.
Mudslide Obstacle Trail Run, June 20
Never heard of the Mudslide? If you enjoy obstacle trail runs, enhanced by lots of mud, then this event is for you. It’s a fun run with 11 obstacles taking place on June 20 on the slopes of Holiday Valley. You can decide if you want to tackle the 3.5-mile or a 5.4-mile course. Space is limited to 1,200 participants, so sign up now. Kids as young as 7 years old may run the shorter course, or kids under 12 can participate in the Kids’ Race, which is ½ mile long and includes 2 obstacles and the final mudslide.
Don’t forget to wear your zaniest costumes, because prizes will be awarded for most creative. Everyone gets an award at the finish line — after they slip down the huge mudslide, the grand finale of the race.
For more details or to register, visit www.holidayvalley.com/mudslide.
Bring the whole family to an authentic rodeo featuring more than 350 rodeo athletes. It’s Wild West, non-stop action with nine exciting events. There’s even a Kids’ Stick Horse Rodeo for the kids. For details, visit www.ellicottvillerodeo.com.
Summer Music Festival, July 3–5
This eagerly anticipated annual event kicks off July 3 with the Mountaintop Party at Holiday Valley. Ride the chairlift to the top and enjoy drinks, hors d’oeuvres and a fabulous view.
On July 4, the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra will delight all ages with well-known tunes from the “Star Wars” movies, including a live “battle” between good and evil. It wouldn’t be the Fourth of July without patriotic tunes, made even more special as they are synched to a spectacular fireworks grand finale.
The Grammy Award-winning band Blood, Sweat and Tears will take the stage on July 5 for the weekend finale. The band, headed by talented American Idol runner-up Bo Bice, will take you back many decades with hits like “Spinning Wheel” and “You’ve Made Me So Very Happy.” Warming up the crowd is Buffalo’s Caitlin Koch, who was featured in “The X Factor USA” in 2011. Koch will be performing her original music.
Bring a picnic, blankets and lawn chairs and settle in for a great weekend. Get tickets at www.ellicottvilleny.com. Children 12 and under admitted free.
Also that weekend, village happenings will include the annual pet parade, arts and crafts show, and strawberry festival, not to mention the shopping, dining and nightly live music.