North Lake Tahoe, California Things to Do

Find fun things to do in North Lake Tahoe, California. There’s a fabulous variety of totally fun tourist attractions and things to do in North Lake Tahoe to suit every taste, from skiing and snowboarding in winter to fishing and water sports in the summer. Plus, there is plenty of dining, shopping and activities when it’s time to come inside. Whether you’re looking to hit the slopes or hit the shops, restaurants, spas or the casino tables, you’ll find it all in beautiful Lake Tahoe, California. The Squaw Valley Lodge provides the perfect spot to experience it all!

Local Artist Feature: Alena Grace Photography

May in Yosemite Valley. Photo credit Alena Grace Photography.

The Lake Tahoe region is a mecca for incredible artists who seek to truly capture its awestruck beauty and magnificent terrain. Alena Saporsky, of Alena Grace Photography, is no different.  While living in Alaska in 2003 Alena could not take her eyes off the fascinating surroundings, and began shooting landscapes as a hobby.  After 7 years of exploration with landscape and wildlife photography, she became “addicted and obsessed.”

Wild Mustang in Reno, NV. Photo Credit Alena Grace Photography.

Bodega Bay Spring. Photo credit Alena Grace Photography.

Alena’s passion for the outdoors is evident in her photography, and demonstrates a keen eye for the purity of her natural surroundings.  She has resided in all kinds of environments, ranging from the urban sprawl of Anaheim, CA to the heat of Palm Desert, CA, from the rugged mountains of Denali, AK to the alpine community of Lake Tahoe, CA.  Alena is inspired by the work of Ansel Adams, Peter Lik, and Georgia O’Keefe, who were all visionaries and tremendously influential in their artistic mediums.  Alena enjoys living in an area where she can easily shoot The Yosemite Valley, Lassen Volcanic National Park, the beaches of Big Sur, and San Francisco just hours away.

Cobalt and Turquoise. Photo credit Alena Grace Photography.

When asked what is her greatest challenge as a photographer, she remarked, “When you see something beautiful and you can’t enjoy it because you didn’t snap the photo, thus, you can’t share it with people. Or while driving you can’t pull over when you see something amazing, having the shot pass and you did not capture it. For example, I saw a full rainbow over Martis Valley the other morning at 7am formed by frozen fog (I think) and by the time I could pull over, it was out of my sight. Sometimes I wish I could take all the images I have seen with my eyes and turn them into photos.”

Alena Grace Photography is picking up speed in the area as a local landscape photography favorite, but Alena offers other services such as portrait sessions, wedding and event photography. The Resort at Squaw Creek recently chose Alena Grace Photography images exclusively for their 2012 calendar. Be sure to pick one up, or request one, when you have a chance!

To see more of Alena’s work and further information about booking, please visit Alena Grace Photography or contact alenagracephotography@gmail.com.


North Tahoe Arts: The Weekly 30 Year Anniversary Exhibit

If you’re a vintage buff, then be sure to check out the exhibit of Lake Tahoe’s local magazine, The Weekly, at North Tahoe Arts Center in Tahoe City from January 5th to February 27th!

The Weekly celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2012, and pays homage to its history by displaying one cover picked from every year of publication from its inception in 1982.  An Opening Reception for the exhibit is January 13th from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Arts Center, is free to the public and locals and tourists alike are  invited to attend.

The 30 years of covers on exhibit feature winter and summer recreation, local faces, local events and a fantastic look at Tahoe and Truckee for the past 30 years. The highlight of the exhibit is the first edition, which published on February 18, 1982, as “North Tahoe Week.” The first edition was 12 pages and featured a photograph by Vance Fox of a skier cliff jumping near the horse trails in Squaw Valley.

The Weekly is celebrating its 30th year with a redesign of the magazine, debuting on January 12th, along with a special 30th anniversary edition on February 9th.  They will host a 30th anniversary party on February 11th, for all attend.  At this time the location is TBD.

For further information please e-mail editor@tahoethisweek.com.


The Village at Squaw Valley Après Ski Music Series

You’re spent.  You just relished in a day of skiing the slopes of Squaw Valley.  It’s been a blast, but now you’re ready to unwind at après ski.  Then grab a hot drink and snack, and relax at The Village Events Plaza where you can enjoy live music from 3pm to 5pm! Below is the line up for the 2012 winter/spring season:

  • January 7, 2012- Chuckie Dunn
  • January 14, 2012- Jeff Jones
  • January 15, 2012- Emily Tessmer
  • January 16, 2012- Ben Fuller
  • January 21, 2012- Chinese New Year Celebration
  • January 28, 2012- Ben Martin
  • February 4, 2012- Ben Martin
  • February 11, 2012- TBD
  • February 19, 2012- Jeff Jones
  • February 20, 2012- Please Do Not Fight
  • February 25, 2012- Emily Tessmer
  • March 3, 2012- Ben Martin
  • March 10, 2012- Jeff Jones
  • March 17, 2012- The Blarney Band
  • March 18, 2012- The Blarney Band
  • March 24, 2012- Emily Tessmer
  • March 31, 2012- Jeff Jones
  • April 7, 2012- Ben Martin
  • April 14, 2012- Jeff Jones
  • April 21, 2012- Earth Day Celebration featuring Ten Mile Tide
  • April 28, 2012- Ben Martin
  • May 5, 2012- Jellybread

Please keep in mind, performances are subject to change due to weather.

If you’re looking to grab a hot drink in the Village or sustenance to refuel from your long day on the mountain, then head over to The Auld Dubliner and order their famous “Snowshoe Thompson,” or  how about a tasty red at Uncorked at Squaw? And if you’re looking for something quick to warm your belly then grab a cup of homemade soup at Soupa! To explore other restaurant or bar options at Squaw Valley, click here.


New Year’s Eve at North Lake Tahoe

New Year's Eve Fireworks at Squaw Valley, 2010. Photo by Timothy Konrad

Whether you’re toasting the New Year with just your loved one, or bundling up the whole family for a night of fireworks and tasty treats, we have your guide to New Year’s Eve at North Lake Tahoe right here!

Fire and Ice New Year’s Celebration at Northstar-at-Tahoe

  • Ring in the New Year at Northstar’s infamous Fire and Ice Celebration! A DJ kicks off the evening on stage at 1pm, followed by the “Ripperroo Parade” at 4:45pm, where the young ones can blow noisemakers and hang out with Ripperroo. Adults can enjoy “An Evening with Led Zeppelin 2: The Experience” from 7 to 9 pm and the fireworks spectacular at 9 pm! Enjoy Cabana Bar drink specials all evening, from the “Resolution Martini” to the “Chocolate Mistletoe”.  Click here for details.

Family New Year’s Eve Party at Squaw Valley

  • Celebrate New Year’s Eve at High Camp with a all-ages evening on your favorite mountain, Squaw Valley. Ride the Cable Car up to High Camp for a night of entertainment that begins at 6 pm. (Be sure to catch the 5, 5:15, 5:30 or 5:45 pm tram.) You’ll be treated to a fabulous buffet dinner, music and dancing for the young and old alike. No need to stay up to the wee hours because you’ll ring in the New Year with a 9 pm. East Coast New Year’s champagne toast (sparkling apple cider for the youngsters). Afterwards, ride back to the Village to view the New Year’s Eve Fireworks display at 9:30 pm.
  • Reservations are required. Email abarker@squaw.com to reserve your spot. Tickets are $36 adults, $26 kids 12 and under (Cable Car tickets sold separately).

New Year’s Eve in Squaw Valley’s Olympic House

  • If you’re without the kiddos, and looking to celebrate in style then join the New Year’s Eve bash at Squaw Valley’s Olympic House. Known as the biggest party on the North Shore, Olympic House will host two DJ’s and a live band that spreads across all five bars in the lodge. The party starts at 9 pm and goes till drink service ends at 1:30 am. Cover is $10 at the door (cash only) and you must be 21+ with a valid ID. If you still want to see fireworks, a display is scheduled to launch from the Village at 9:30 pm (PT).

Sip and Shop at Squaw Valley Sport

  • Before the evening festivities get underway, head over to Squaw Valley Sport at 4pm for wine tasting and shopping!

Wine Tasting at Uncorked at Tahoe City

  • Uncorked Tahoe City hosts a winemaker’s tasting from 4 to 7 p.m with Auteur. Call (530) 581-1106 for details.

Torchlight Parade at Tahoe Donner Downhill

  • A unique and glowing way to ring in the New Year! This celebration is for intermediate skiers and riders ages 10 or older who can ski or ride unassisted in the dark on our Race Course run. Tahoe Donner Downhill recommends you come early to ensure you secure a spot in the parade. A DJ and snacks will be provided in the bar area prior to the parade. Sign-up is 4:30-5:45 pm with a 6:00 pm start time. View some video from the 2010 New Year’s parade!

New Year’s Eve Dinners in North Lake Tahoe and Truckee

  • Lone Eagle Grille at the Hyatt Regency: Why not dine lakeside with live music at this New Year’s Eve Celebration from 5:30 pm to 12:30 am? Regular menu offered from 5:30 to 7 pm, and a special five-course menu from 8 to 10:30 pm. Call for reservations (775) 886-6899.
  • Manzanita at The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe: If you’re not the budget-minded then celebrate with friends and family at the The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe’s New Year’s Eve dinner at Manzanita. You can choose an early seating from 5 to 6:30 pm with a special a la carte menu. Or, enjoy a special four-course menu from 8:30 pm to 1 am with a champagne toast, music, party favors and dancing. Reservations required and books up quickly! (530) 562-3000
  • PlumpJack Cafe at The PlumpJake Inn: PlumpJack hosts a prix-fix New Year’s Eve Dinner with a four-course menu. $120/person. Call for reservations (530) 583-1578. Follow your evening of delectable cuisine by viewing the fireworks spectacular at the Village at 9:30 pm.

Holiday Events at Squaw Valley: Magical Memories

Photo courtesy of Alena Grace Photography

Snow, steaming hot cocoa and sleigh rides. There is so much happening this year at the 7th Annual Magical Memories, we don’t know where to begin!

Resort at Squaw Creek has crafted a bevy of holiday activities for all ages, which runs from November 25, 2011 to January 8, 2012. We’ll just whet your appetite for winter wonderland galore with these options: holiday caroling, cookie decorating, wine and cheese tastings, s’mores roast and hot cocoa by the bonfire, breakfast with Santa, stories with Mrs. Claus in the lobby, snowman making competition, sleigh rides and more!  To see a detailed list of events by date and more information, click here!

If you are music buff, then be sure to set aside these dates and get your ticket while you can! Handel’s “Messiah” in the Grand Sierra Ballroom is a local’s favorite, and not one to miss.

Musical Event Details:

11/30, 12/7, 12/14 at 5 PM: Live Local School Performances. Complimentary!

12/10 and 12/11: The Truckee Tahoe Community Chorus of Sierra College presents “Sing Christmas”;  for tickets click here.

12/16: The Orchestra and Community Chorus of the Tahoe Area (TOCCATA) presents a special version of Handel’s “Messiah” in the Grand Sierra Ballroom. Buy your  tickets here!


Next Level Women’s Freeskiing Camp: Ingrid Backstrom & Jessica Sobolowski-Quinn

For women who list “be a better skier” and “build confidence” to their New Year’s Resolutions, Ingrid Backstrom and Jessica Sobolowski-Quinn are hosting the ultimate women’s weekend ski camp aimed at accomplishing both of those goals. The camp will also showcase world famous Squaw Valley and help women feel more comfortable skiing the entire mountain.

The camp is open to expert skiers, ages 13 and up.  Campers receive unparalleled coaching from the world’s top women big mountain skiers.  A videographer films each participant during Saturday’s session so women can gain a visual perspective of their skiing strengths and weaknesses prior to heading out for day two.

What: Unparalleled women’s ski clinic led by the world’s top women big mountain skiers. For women who want to improve their skiing and confidence on the mountain in a fun, pressure-free environment.

Also available is video filming on the first day so women can gain a visual perspective of their skiing strengths and weaknesses prior to heading out for day two.

Ingrid and Jessica are excited to team up with WOW (Women of Winter) and have one WOW instructor per group along with your big mountain coach. The WOW clinics are a great way to get ready for the Next Level Camp.

Who: Next Level is limited to experts due to the goal of the camp. Please feel free to call or email about ability questions.

When: January 7th  and 8th, 2012.

Where: On the slopes of Squaw Valley, with the ski-in/ski-out Squaw Valley Lodge as the host hotel for meeting area, yoga, breakfast / lunch and video analysis. Special Next Level Clinic lodging rates are available at Squaw Valley Lodge. Group reservation details are below.

Cost: $495 without lift tickets. With lift tickets for Saturday and Sunday: $633

  • Cost includes 1/2 hour morning yoga session Saturday and Sunday, breakfast, lunch, video, 6 ladies – 2 coach ratio and a gift bag and prizes from Columbia, Northface, Clif Bar, Zeal, Kombi, Volkl / Marker and Tecnica.

Description of the day: We will meet at 7:30AM each morning. Sherry McConkey, once again, will have a morning yoga session that focuses on getting your mind and muscles ready for the day. Breakfast is served from 8:15-8:45AM. Groups will hit the hill at 9am – 12pm where we will take an hour for lunch. 1pm -4pm groups will meet again and ski until mountain closing. On Saturday, immediately following group skiing, Ingrid and Jessica will host the video analysis day with beverages and appetizers.

Questions: Call 530.412.1031 or email: jsstahoe@gmail.com

Registration Information: Email Jessica @ jsstahoe@gmail.com for registration and pay instructions.

Lodging/Booking Reservation:

  • Call 800.979.0486 and ask for the Next Level Women’s Clinic Special Rates.
  • Email reservations@squawvalleylodge.com, and ask for the Next Level Women’s Ski Clinic Booking Code to receive group discounts.

Enjoy the finest of amenities and services.

  • Ski-in/Ski-out convenience
  • Spacious Studio to 3-Bedroom Condominiums
  • Steps from Dining, Shopping  and Activities in Squaw Valley’s Village
  • Voted the #1 Squaw Valley hotel on TripAdvisor
  • Extensive Health Club with Indoor/Outdoor Spas, steam room and sauna

About Ingrid and Jessica

Ingrid has podium in numerous freeskiing contests and filmed for various ski movies including 8 Matchstick Productions films.  She climbed and skied Denali this past June as part of a team with The North Face, and after spending the past season traveling everywhere from Japan to Greenland to Chile, she looks forward to skiing KT more this season.  Her coaching experience includes co-ed and women’s camps throughout the West and in South America for the past 7 years.

Jessica Sobolowski-Quinn has been in over a dozen ski movies. Jessica has ton’s of first descents in the Chugach Mountain Range where she spends 3 months every spring guiding and running Points North. She is a mom to Kinley Drake Quinn and calls Squaw Valley her home. She hosts “Alaskan Ladies” at Points North Heli (PNH, www.alaskaheliski.com), which she owns and operates with her husband.



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