The annual WinterFest, organized by the La Porte Park and Recreation Department, returns January 27-29, with many of the events enjoyed over the past years as well a couple new twists to bring a blast of winter fun to town.
FRIDAY - JANUARY 27
ICE SCULPTURING DEMONSTRATIONS – FREE Friday afternoon - Plaza 618 - Downtown La Porte
Ice, ice, baby! Our downtown will transform into a frozen art gallery at Plaza 618. Enjoy the creative designs as you peruse the offerings at local shops, enjoy a hearty meal at one of the local restaurants and enjoy some time on this year's ice skating rink!
Sponsored by: NIPSCO and City's Pure Ice
SATURDAY - JANUARY 28
SNOWBALL SOFTBALL COED TOURNEY – 9 a.m. – Lions Field
Dashing through the snow, turning double plays! Get your team together for our version of the "hot stove" league. Double-elimination tournament; limited to the first eight teams to register. Pre-registration required. Team entry fee $185. Deadline to enter is Friday, January 20. Forms available on our website.
GYMNASTICS FOR KIDS (AGES 6 & UNDER) - FREE 11 a.m.-noon - Civic Auditorium - Lower Level
Flip the winter gloom away! Come and join certified instructor Christie Trksak as she introduces gymnastics to the Park and Recreation activities! Full classes will begin later this Spring, but come and meet our instructor and check out the program for FREE during WinterFest! Children must be accompanied by an adult. Waiver required.
PARTIES ON THE GOGH PAINTING CLASS - 1-3 p.m. - Civic Auditorium - Ceramics Room
What is winter without a cute penguin to make you smile? Don't like the wet snow and cold? Here is a WinterFest event just for you! This class is for all ages. Pre-registration is required with a $35 fee payable at the Park Office. All supplies and instruction are included.
FROSTY'S FROZEN BIKE RIDE – FREE 1-3 p.m. - Cummings Lodge
Feeling the winter blahs? Riding a bike in the winter will help beat back those wintertime blues. The event starts at noon with registration while the pedaling takes off at 1 p.m. Participants will take a leisurely one-hour ride and return to Cummings Lodge for some snacks and hot chocolate. Check your tires, bundle up (layers are recommended), grab your helmet and let's cruise together!
GLOW IN THE DARK SCAVENGER HUNT – FREE 5 p.m.-7 p.m. - Fox Park Amphitheater
Join us for a breath of fresh air while combing the park for glow in the dark clues to complete your assigned riddle. The park will be used as a template for glow in the dark letters when combined will allow you to successfully complete your challenge. Wear your boots, bundle up and bring your flashlight for the return of this fun WinterFest event!
SUNDAY - JANUARY 29
PANCAKE BREAKFAST - Kiwanis Club of La Porte 7:30-11:30 a.m. - La Porte Armory
Make sure you stop out at the La Porte Armory to get some yummy warm food before heading out to enjoy the final day of WinterFest. The return of the Kiwanis Club of La Porte's all-you-can eat Pancake Breakfast has been greatly anticipated! The breakfast includes pancakes, eggs, sausage and refreshments. The event is FREE with all donations benefiting La Porte County 4H.
ICE SKATING - FREE ENTRY 1-8 p.m. - Downtown La Porte Ice Rink
Glide yourself into a day of enjoyment! Bundle up and come ice skate in Downtown La Porte. Located at Monroe and State streets. Skate time is FREE by entering the discount code WINTERFEST during checkout. Skate rental available for $3. A signed waiver is required. Reserve your spot at www.laporteparkandrec.com.
HORSE DRAWN WAGON RIDES – FREE 1:30-3:30 p.m. - Cummings Lodge
Jingle, jingle, jingle. Take a brisk ride through the beauty of wintry nature while enjoying the majesty of the equine. After a trot through Soldiers Memorial Park, warm up with a cup of hot chocolate by the fireplace. Sponsored by: Hubers Marine
SNOW ART – La Porte County Parks – FREE 2-4 p.m. Luhr Park Nature Center
Join Ranger Laura for some fun snow art (weather dependent), create a craft and have a snack at the Luhr County Park Nature Center. All ages are welcome and no pre-registration is required. All children must be accompanied by an adult.
Unfortunately, Mother Nature did not cooperate this year for the popular ICE FISHING DERBY event scheduled on Saturday, January 28, and hosted by the De Camp Band of Brothers. This event has been cancelled.