Core Winterfest activities such as outdoor horse drawn sleigh rides will be joined by a slate of new fun such as outdoor curling and indoor Laser tag this year. Admission is free including free hotdogs and marshmallows served outdoors. The event is set for Family Day on Monday Feb. 19 at the Servus Sports Centre from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. File photo
Winterfest 2018 could be the Olympic Games on training wheels with no pressure and free admission to all activities.
Up to 5,000 residents are expected to participate in a range of fun indoor and outdoor games and activities at the Servus Sports Centre as our Canadian athletes go for gold in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
The sixth annual event takes place on Family Day–Monday Feb. 19 from 10 a.m to 2 p.m. with the making of Olympic medals added to the mix of fun.
Olympic medallions will be part of indoor crafting making to be hosted by staff from the Lloydminster Cultural & Science Centre in the OTS room.
Future Olympic curlers may also emerge by learning skills at a fun mini curling rink set up outside for the first time at Winterfest.
“We’ve put in a curling rink next to the Husky Oval and we’re going to be using coffee cans as curling rocks,” said Christine Lawrence, recreation planner for the sports centre.
“It’s just a little mini rink so families can get the feeling of curling.”
Snowshoeing and maple candy making are among the new outdoor activities Lawrence added this year to keep the event fresh.
“I was just trying to get more people to go outside and get active outside, but just always bringing something different to the table,” she explained.
“It’s always nice for the families, and the original things that we have here are always really good too with the bounce castles and all that.”
Rotarians will volunteer their time once again at the bounce castle venue and a zoo of kids.
Other returning core events that always draw a crowd include horse and sleigh rides, indoor and outdoor public skating and shinny, this time with the female PWM AAA Steelers.
Sticking with hockey, there is also the Boundary Ford Shoot Out on tap with donations made to KidSport.
New indoor fun includes Laser Tag with 1-UP Gaming, indoor archery and indoor ice fishing with Wildside Outdoors in one of the field houses.
Lawrence stressed all of this is free, including hotdogs cooked and served outdoors by ATCO employees, and marshmallow roasting with the Lion’s Club.
Lawrence also tipped her hat to the presenting Winterfest sponsor, Spectrum Restoration DKI as well as Nordic, ATCO and Wildside Outdoors community partners.
“Without them it wouldn’t be possible to run this sort of events for free,” she said.
Her advice to Winterfest goers is to dress for the weather.
“It’s indoors and outdoors—we’re going to have the Lloydminster cultural centre upstairs in the OTS Room and there’s going to be a nice little relaxation area in there,” said Lawrence.
“So you can warm up in here and also play outside, get your winter boots on and snow pants, and participate in the snow too.”
With so many people attending, parking will be at a premium, with no parking this year on the north side of the sports centre to protect pedestrians accessing the outdoor activities.
The plan is to add more handicapped spaces out front on the main south entrance.