by Morinville News Staff
Morinville residents and guests will have three days of activity this Family Day weekend. Morinville’s Community Development Coordinator Allen Jacobson said this year’s winter festival activities – running Feb. 14 to 16 – has expanded from previous years.
Family tobogganing at Sunshine Lake, a Valentine’s Family Skate on Saturday, and a family dance Sunday night are some of the activities planned for this year’s event. Snowman Festival staples, including the Annual Bob Foster Memorial Fishing Derby, crafts, and Snowman Contest will continue.
“I think it’s a great way to celebrate community and to take time out to celebrate family, and also the winter,” Jacobson said. “I’m born and raised in Edmonton and I love the winter. If you don’t embrace it, you’re in trouble.”
Jacobson is hoping the regular and new offerings as enticement to bring people out over the weekend.
One of the new offerings is called Family Snow Fun. Jacobson said the arena parking lot will be full of snow. “It’s an opportunity for community snowman building and snow sculpting,” he said.
The coordinator is also adding deep freezer races to the mix. “It’s old freezer with snow ski blades on them,” Jacobson said. “We’re going to do it for an hour, and we’ve got some prizes.”
Monday will see the majority of events taking place. Jacobson has a three-on-three family hockey tournament planned. Each team must have one player over the age of 18. Family curling will also take place on Monday. Facepainting, community lunch, baseball and soccer registration will round out the day’s events at the arena.
Another of the new elements Jacobson has planned for this year will allow festival goers to see some professional ice sculptures. He is lining St. Jean Baptiste Park’s walkways with 150 candles for what he is calling Morinville’s Illuminaria. Five ice sculptures, a fire pit, hot chocolate and illuminated walkways will create the atmosphere Feb. 16 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
“I think it is a perfect location; people can stroll the park to see stuff,” Jacobson said. “It won’t be too dark. People can see the murals, enjoy the ambiance. We will have candles on the walkway and circling the ice sculptures. It’s a beautiful way to cap the weekend celebration of snow and ice and winter.”
Jacobson said he would ultimately like to partner with other Capital Region municipalities to create a circuit of winter festivals. “It becomes a collective, a regional celebration of these things,” he said. “We can piggyback and dovetail like we do with jazz festivals where we have one artist go across the country. Why not have these ice sculptures that come from Latvia or Estonia or Russia hopscotch through the area?”
For more details on specific event times and locations, see the poster below.