Unusually warm weather in the past few days has melted much of the snow that Bethel received in last week’s blizzard. Ice in ponds, lakes, and rivers across the state has also melted. Although ice fishing season began on Jan. 1, the Warden Service has warned that many ponds and lakes are unsafe. They are telling people to check the thickness of the ice before venturing out to fish or skate.
Despite the warm weather, there has been good snowshoeing and cross-country skiing in the past week. The Bethel area has numerous free trails where people can snowshoe, including the Parkway, Mt. Will on Route 2, and Maggie’s Nature Park on the Greenwood Road in Greenwood.
This week we have a unique opportunity in our area to watch national Nordic ski competition. The U.S. Cross Country Ski Championships are taking place at Black Mountain in Rumford. They began on Sunday, Jan. 2, and go through Saturday, Jan. 8. Almost 500 Nordic skiers are competing in the races, which are open to spectators and are free.
Have you seen the flock of pink flamingos that is traveling around the Bethel area? The flamingos are part of a fundraising effort by fifth-grade students at Crescent Park School to raise money for their trip to Boston. If you would like the flamingos to visit your home or business, or would like to give them to a friend for a day, call Echoo at 875-2642 or Fran at 824-0773.
I attended my family’s holiday gathering on New Year’s Day at the home of my sister, Rebecca Crommett, in Norway. Guests included Musa Brown and Avery Angevine of Bethel; Laurie and Bob Hickey of Shelburne, N.H.; Karen Davis and Katie and Hannah Matczak of Bellingham, Mass.; and Heather Panico, Tia Panico, and Greg Tsiatis of Middleburgh, N.Y.
Do you have a favorite spot for cross-country skiing, sledding, or snowshoeing that you’d like to share (especially if it’s free), please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 824-2483.