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Ice Fest 2017 Encourages Alpena Community to Embrace Winter

Northern Lights Arena hosted their 1st annual 2017 Ice Fest over the weekend. The event was full of activities for the entire family to enjoy over two days.

Some activities included ice-skating, corn hole, bubble soccer, and more. Manager and Organizer, Keli Werda said she hopes that the Ice Fest will bring back winter events for the community of Alpena.

“Those people that have been from Alpena, or lived here years ago know they always had a winter carnival and a winter festival and it was big and it encompassed the whole county. People did ice sculptures in their yards and had contest and then we had things like skating and all sorts of winter activities…it’s a community event I think it’s important that we get that back,” Werda said.

President of the Thunder Bay Trails Association, Thomas Dowd said he hopes the Ice Fest influences people to embrace winter.

“We don’t want to be living inside hibernating so get outside and enjoy winter. It is a lot of fun if you just enjoy it and get out there and do it. People tend to hibernate there’s not that much sun in the winter time and it’s cloudy all the time and in fact I heard we got less sunlight then we do here then they do in Seattle, so it can be depressing. It’s a long season and really drags on so getting outside and doing something active, get some sunshine if there is any that’s what you have to do to kind of suffer through these winters,” Dowd explained.

Dowd said he hopes to create a mini winter Olympics in the future of Ice Fest. Thunder Bay Trails Association will be hosting a free candlelight cross-country ski night on Saturday February 11th at 6 pm at Norway Ridge.