That's right, Crosslake WinterFest and SoupFest are this weekend! It's a weekend when the city comes even more alive, taking in all the fun that winter has to offer.
The weekend begins on Thursday, Feb. 1, with the release of the first WinterFest Medallion Hunt clue. One of the three clues will be released every day until the medallion is found, winning the sleuths a prize package valued at more than $1,000! The clues will be posted on the Chamber of Commerce WinterFest website.
WCCO TV will also be in Crosslake for WinterFest (no one can resist the fun!) and will be broadcasting live from a location that's to be determined on Thursday evening at 5 p.m. Watch chamber website for information on where the broadcast will be. At 10 p.m. will be a second broadcast from Moonlite Bay.
Friday will see the release of another medallion hunt clue in the morning. At 3:30 in the afternoon is the Cabin Fever Carnival at Crosslake Community School. The carnival will have a bake walk, kids games and more.
The celebration continues at 7 p.m. at the Crosslake Community Center, where there will be a snow mound sledding hill (bring your sled!), a bonfire with s'mores, pond skating, warming house, scavenger hunt, DJ and, at 9 p.m., a fireworks display! The fireworks always look beautiful, reflecting off the snow and booming in the cool night air.
Follow the evening up with dancing at any of several establishments that will have DJs spinning tunes.
On Saturday, the Fireman's Pancake Breakfast kicks off at Crosslake Lutheran from 8-11:30 a.m. Beginning at 11 a.m., Moonlite Bay will have kids games until 1 p.m. and helicopter rides (for a fee) that will go until dusk, weather permitting. Radar runs are another popular activity on the ice on Moonlite Bay. Pay for a run and see just how fast you can go- on whatever you want! A snowmobile, bike, ATV, barstool, you name it. Radar runs will be from 1-4 p.m.
SoupFest tastings begin at noon as 20 local businesses and organizations will compete for the golden ladle. If you've never been to SoupFest, several area businesses will be making soup and handing out free samples to anyone who would like one beginning at noon sharp (no earlier). After having your fill of samples, pick your favorite and turn in your ballot at any of the designating voting stations around town. Find a map of participating SoupFest locations and voting stations here.
Also popular are the annual Italian Olympics at Maucieri's (they start at 1 p.m.) and the Bocce Ball tournament at Riverside (which starts at noon). The Bourbon Room will have a free meat raffle at 2 p.m., and the Crosslake-Fifty Lakes American Legion will have bar bingo at 1:30 p.m.
Several area bars will finish the night with live music and DJs.
For $5, WinterFest celebrators can purchase a wristband at area businesses that serves not only as a souvenir of the weekend but also entitles the wearer to special deals throughout town. Restaurants, bars and shops alike will have specials available to wristband wearers all weekend.
In addition to the wristbands, bottle coozies are also for sale for $5. Having the coozie means you can buy Coors Light bottles for just $2.5o at area bars and restaurants all weekend long!
There are many more events taking place throughout the weekend not listed here! For a full listing, visit the chamber's WinterFest event webpage.