by Katy Richardson, Paws Up Reservations Specialist
Montanans take summer seriously. This is partly due to long days of guaranteed sun and a culture that highly values the great outdoors, but, regardless, summer days in Montana are very active. We fill our time with revved-up, hair-raising adventure, taking advantage of the crystal-clear rivers that offer white water thrills, the open fields begging to be explored and the untamed beauty of mountain summits that beckon us to climb a little higher. We challenge ourselves to go higher, travel farther and get in as much as we can—every day!
We take summer seriously, and, maybe as a result, we take in the fall season more slowly and thoughtfully. Ask around, and the locals will tell you that fall is also a favorite season in Montana. Every day begets a subtle change—a tamarack changing color, a meadow shifting from green to gold, a gentle slowing of the Blackfoot River—until the entire landscape has gone golden. Fish are jumping. The air is crisp, and people have an urge to cozy up and spend time together. This lends itself well to couples’ trips, culinary events and evenings around a fire. Of course, this doesn’t mean the adventure stops come autumn. We always have amazing things to explore here at Paws Up. The coming of fall simply means our guests might be more inclined to ease back in their saddles, pause on the trigger and savor a moment. We have many diverse events going on throughout the fall season. Here are my Top 5 Favorite Fall Events at Paws Up:
- Cowboy Experience (October 26–29, 2017)
Paws Up is pleased to continue our partnership with the ProRodeo Hall of Fame and the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame to create an incredible weekend straight out of your favorite Western. The hall of famers will lead workshops and demonstrations, gallop on trail rides and share their favorite campfire stories. We end every night with an incredible gourmet meal featuring fine whiskey from three different distillers. And you’re guaranteed to rub elbows with the cowboys and cowgirls who show you the ropes throughout the day.
- Cookbook Live Presents: Art of the Pie (November 3–6, 2017)
There’s a reason why we continually invite Kate McDermott back to Paws Up every year: she’s a master at what she does. And, even better, she’s a master who’s willing to share her secrets, just like she does in her highly praised cookbook Art of the Pie. McDermott will guide you through making perfect, flaky fresh pies, just in time for you to show off to friends and family at Thanksgiving.
- AdrenZen: Fall (October 20–23, 2017)
Combining exhilarating wilderness adventures with 37,000 acres of meditative space makes Paws Up the perfect location for a wellness weekend. With two guest instructors—celebrity yogi Kristin McGee and fitness and lifestyle expert Idalis Velazquez—you’re sure to burn calories, push yourself and get centered, all in a safe, fun environment. And with all of that exercise, you’ll need to keep your energy up. That’s where Executive Chef Ben Jones and cookbook author Alison Lewis come in. Jones will satisfy your appetite with gourmet food, healthy cocktails and private culinary instruction. Lewis will also be providing hands-on workshops with recipes from her latest cookbook, 200 Best Smoothie Bowl Recipes. Adrenaline and Zen—we’ve got them both here.
- Thanksgiving (November 22–26, 2017)
Thanksgiving is all about coming together with the people you love, sharing memories over a beautiful meal. So, bring your loved ones to The Resort at Paws Up, and we’ll take care of everything else. We’ll baste the turkey and make sure the pies don’t burn, while you watch the big game, view the parade on TV, play a game of touch football or go on hayride. And, of course, the food will incredible. Executive Chef Ben Jones will create gourmet, upscale options, as well as Thanksgiving favorites, and even share some dishes from the Jones family recipe book. Oh, and we’ll do the dishes too.
- Montana Master Chefs: Rising All-Stars (September 21–24, 2017)
This is the culinary event that started them all at Paws Up. There’s a reason Montana Master Chefs is at the top of my list. It encompasses so much of what I love about being on property at Paws Up in the fall: gorgeous September views, exhilarating activities, an incredible community feel and, of course, amazing, out-of-this-world meals. This year is extra special in that we’re featuring rising all-stars. These chefs may not be household names quite yet, but, when they are, you’ll be able to say you dined with them. And, rather than sampling their delicious dishes in a crowded restaurant, you’ll get to experience these masters at their craft in an intimate setting, while they tell you about their food on a personal level. This event is upscale without pretense and is exactly what Paws Up is about.