Mother Nature provided the snow, and plenty of it. Fort William Historical Park now plans to provide the fun.
Starting Saturday, outdoor enthusiasts are expected to flock to the Fort to take part in the Ontario provincial park’s annual Winter Carnival, a February tradition in Northwestern Ontario.
Park spokesman Marty Mascarin said there will be plenty to see and do all weekend long.
“We have tons of activities for the Winter Carnival. We have sled-dog rides and a giant snow maze that is bigger and better than ever,” Mascarin said Friday.
“We have our tubing runs, of course. We have a sugar shack courtesy of Club Canadien Francais. We’re going to be firing off muskets courtesy of the Canadian Corps of Voyageurs. One of the major highlights that we have is the extreme snow machine stunt show, which will be happening Sunday and Monday afternoon.”
Fort officials are importing the wintry daredevils and have constructed an oversized snow ramp for what promises to be a high-flying brand of fun and entertainment not often seen in these parts.
Mascarin said while winter carnivals weren’t exactly the staple of the fur-trade days the park is trying to create, it just made sense.
“The fur traders were more or less concerned about survival. Given the facilities and the resources that we have, it just seemed natural to have a winter carnival. This is about the 12th year we’ve held it and it’s turned out to be a very popular seasonal event for us,” Mascarin said.
They’re expecting thousands to make the trek out to the Fort for the three-day affair, which will also include skating on the Kaministiquia, outdoor curling and arcade games for youngsters seeking a more modern attraction.
“It looks like weather is generally in our favour. We’ve got hopes that a lot of people will come out,” Mascarin said.
Winter Carnival runs 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Sunday and Family Day Monday.
Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, students and youth, and free for children five years and under. They’re available at the gate.
Would-be repeat customers can also purchase weekend passes.
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