February will be here before we know it and, the 2013 Bethel WinterFest will be too! Presented by Norway Savings Bank and Sunday River Resort – and organized by the Town of Bethel and the Bethel Area Chamber of Commerce WinterFest Task Force – everyone can look forward to enjoying wholesome and fun winter activities for the entire family!
NEW THIS YEAR is a snowman building contest. The planning committee is hoping to have residents of and visitors to our area collectively build more than 2,500 snowmen – take photos – and upload them to the Chamber’s Facebook page. That address is www.facebook.com_bethelarea – \ or as an alternative, e-mail the photo(s) to email@example.com. The winning snowman builder will receive a $100 cash prize and the runner up will receive a gift card to Nabos on Main Street, Bethel. The announcement will be made at the finale event, RailWars on Feb. 23.
For the second year running – our WinterFest Kick-off party will be on Thursday, Feb. 7, from 5:30 to 7:30 at 22 Broad Street at Gideon Hastings House on Broad Street in Bethel. Everyone is welcomed! The “snow” part of the festival officially begins on Saturday, Feb. 9, with our Snowcano Sledding Hill. Come bring your sled, and plan to have a blast sledding till your heart’s content! There are also events going on at Carter’s XC Ski Center in Bethel that first weekend as well as on Valentine’s Day.
For the second year in a row, we will enjoy our Snowcano eruption (a big bonfire) on Saturday, the 16th. If you weren’t at the event last year and don’t know what to expect – be prepared to enjoy a spectacular show! Mt. Abram is offering a Torch-light parade on that Sunday, the 17th.
The third full week of WinterFest is also school vacation week – so there will be events ongoing at all our winter recreation centers as well throughout the region. The final Saturday of the WinterFest we will offer a Snowshoe event compliments of True North Adventureware, free SnowGroomer rides compliments of the Greenstock Snowmobile Club and, the annual WinterFest Railjam, known this year as “RailWars.” This event will take place on the Snowcano and sign-up, at $20 per person, will be at the course starting at 4 p.m., warm-ups start at 5, and competition starts at 6 under the lights. What a great new venue for this popular event! Additional events that weekend are being held at Mt. Abram Resort, Sunday River Resort and at Carter’s XC Center. There may be more events being added to the schedule so check www.bethelwinterfest.com for the latest.
Many thanks to the Town of Bethel for their help with WinterFest – and to committee members Amanda Moran, Joyce Roma, Jim Sysko, Jim Bennett, Nate Clukey, and chamber staff member Jessie Perkins. Already, we have received help from Bancroft Contracting, Savage Contracting, ProQuip Equipment Rentals and the Town of Bethel’s highway department who are bringing town snow to the site to build the base of the sledding hill.
Have fun at WinterFest!
Executive Director, Bethel Area Chamber of Commerce