This month we focus our attention on nine lakes with Winter Carnivals & Festivals. These winter weather celebrations feature a Royal Family coronation, ice and snow sculptures and palaces, a five-mile long ice rink, outhouse and dogsled races, sleigh rides, a polar bear dive – and fireworks galore. Come join the fun in these winter wonderlands!

Ice Palace at Saranac Lake, NY Winter Carnival <BR>photo © ##

Ice Palace at Saranac Lake, NY Winter Carnival
photo © NCPR

Saranac Lake, New York Winter Carnival: February 4-13, 2011
Nestled within New York’s Adirondack Mountains are the Saranac Lakes: Lower Saranac Lake, Middle Saranac Lake, and Upper Saranac Lake. The Village of Saranac Lake, located on the northern tip of Lower Saranac Lake, will host the 114th winter carnival with a ‘Medieval Times’ theme. The 10-day event begins with lighting of the spectacular Ice Palace, built from ice harvested from the lake, and the coronation of the Winter Carnival king and queen. Sports competitions, dances, parades, performances, and fireworks showcase this community celebration.

Ice Castle at St. Paul, MN Winter Carnival <BR>photo © ## Texan

Ice Castle at St. Paul, MN Winter Carnival
photo © Reluctant Texan

Saint Paul, Minnesota Winter Carnival: January 27-February 6, 2011
In the land of 10,000 lakes, Minnesotans describe their winter carnival as “The Coolest Celebration on Earth.” Begun in 1886, this year’s 125th carnival continues the tradition of celebrating St. Paul’s unique history and heritage, beginning with (Minnesota’s own) Royal Family Coronation. The Royal Family travels throughout the year to USA and Canadian communities to promote community awareness and volunteerism. The spectacular Ice Castle has become an internationally recognized icon of the festival – which also features ice sculpture carving competitions, a daytime parade, a torchlight parade, fireworks, and cabarets.

Ice Palace at Lake Louise, Alberta Ice Festival <BR>photo © ##

Ice Palace at Lake Louise, Alberta Ice Festival
photo © jammah1

Lake Louise, Alberta Ice Magic Festival: January 21-23, 2011
Snuggled in the Banff National Forest and framed by the Canadian Rocky Mountains, Lake Louise is renowned for its emerald-turquoise color. The first Banff Winter Carnival was held in 1917, cementing the region’s place as a vacation destination. You can help to continue the tradition in 2011 by watching artisans as they compete in the prestigious International Ice Carving Competition. The Little Chippers Festival teaches children the art of ice carving. Are you shivering? Come in from the cold to enjoy the Carnival Magic Show.

Ice Palace at Quebec City Winter Carnival <BR>photo © ##

Ice Palace at Quebec City Winter Carnival
photo © tuchodi

Quebec City, Quebec Winter Carnival: January 28-February 13, 2011
Known as the “Mardis Gras in the Snow,” Quebec’s Winter Carnival is one of the largest carnivals in the world, transforming the city into a gigantic outdoor party. The “snowman” Bonhomme is the icon of the carnival, recognizable in his red cap, black buttons and Quebecois sash. Each year an ice palace is constructed for Bonhomme, with colored lights shining through the walls of ice. The 57th winter carnival will feature an international snow sculpture competition, the annual canoe race across the St. Lawrence River, an ice slide, dogsled races, night parades, plus outdoor dance parties and concerts. Winter fun continues at nearby lakes: Lac St.-Joseph, Lac Beauport, Lac St.-Charles, and Lac Delage.

To read about all 9 Winter Carnivals and Festivals, visit our Lakelubbers Newsletter Archive. And don’t forget to sign up for future newsletters, delivered straight to your email inbox!

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