15th annual Mountaineering Fest set in Keene starting Jan. 14

KEENE VALLEY - The Mountaineer and Adirondack Rock and River have teamed up to host the 15th annual Adirondack International Mountaineering Festival, which will be held on Martin Luther King weekend, Friday, Jan. 14 through Sunday, Jan. 16.

This year's event will kick off Friday night with a slide show by Freddie Wilkinson at Keene Central School at 8 p.m. Wilkinson is one of the finest alpinists in the world and will take us on his most recent climbing expeditions and talk about his recently published book "One Mountain Thousand Summits," which he will be signing after his presentation.

Saturday's presentation, by renowned Exum guide and Teton legend Mark Newcomb, will be preceded by raffles and a trailer for Jeff Lowe's new film. This show will also be at the school and will begin at 7:30 p.m. The Keene Valley Fire Department and the Lake Placid Pub and Brewery will be hosting an all-you-can-eat spaghetti dinner at the nearby fire hall starting at 5:30 p.m.

Sunday's entertainment will be Vermont's star climber Matt McCormick, presenting slides and video at 7:30 p.m. at the Keene Valley Fire Hall.

Demo gear will be available for testing at Rock and River from 9 to 11 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Reps from La Sportiva, Black Diamond, Mountain Hardwear, Marmot, Petzl, OR, Mammut, Patagonia and MSR will have a selection of the latest gear to send out for testing. Several instructional clinics on ice climbing, mountaineering, snowshoeing and avalanche awareness are still open on Saturday and Sunday. There are limited openings in Saturday's Avalanche, Snowshoe Mountaineering and Intermediate/Advanced Ice clinics, as well as Sunday's Advanced Ice, Steep Ice for the Weak and Chickenhearted, Snowshoe Mountaineering and "Climb a Slide" clinics.

The Mountain Fest is a charity event that supports local and regional non profits every year.

Call the Mountaineer at 576-2281 or visit www.mountaineer.com for more information.

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