The days of the cool cats hating winter are over! We love that there has been a huge shift all across our city: instead of complaining about the weather, communities are creating ways for Edmontonians to get outside, meet their neighbours, and fall in love with our coolest season.
This past winter, we bundled up, snuggled up and wore our #WinterCity pride at wintry events large and small all over our city. And with the help of our new WinterCityEdmonton micro-grant, the SNOW FUNd, community leagues and other groups are able to access funds to help make winter that much more fun in their neighbourhood.
Here’s a round-up of a few of the great events we supported through the SNOW FUNd. Now it’s up to you to get dreaming and planning about the winter event you could host in your ‘hood for next year!
Lendrum Community League
“We had our annual Lendrum Winter Fair on March 2, and while much colder than in previous years, our community still had a blast! We had a great turnout to enjoy the horse-drawn sleigh-rides, sledding, snowshoeing, and hot chocolate and a campfire to warm up. It was a great afternoon spent with neighbours, and it was wonderful to get out and enjoy our fantastic community in the winter.” ~ Julie Moehler
Parkallen Community League
“We had our Snowfest on March 10 and it was a wonderful day! The weather was stunning! A lot of people commented to me that it was one of the best Snowfests we have ever had. It definitely was a great way to come out of the deep freeze. We had horse-drawn sleigh-rides, a luge, bannock making, sledge hockey, skating, chair massages, Pink Gorilla pizza and plenty of hot dogs for everyone. It was great to see Councillor Walters, as he always attends our event. Honorable Lori Sigurdson also attended and helped people sign up for our prizes. All in all it was a great day that brought our community out of their homes from the deep freeze to celebrate the coming of spring!” ~ Allison Chevrette
King Edward Park Community League
“In King Edward Park, the polar vortex didn’t keep some hearty and well-bundled families from our Winter Play Day. The weather was cold but the Nutella Hot Chocolate was warm! We huddled around fires sharing stories of past winters and roasting apples, we kick-sledded, broom-balled, snowshoed, scavenger-hunted and played until our noses froze. The bravest winter warriors even enjoyed cones piled high with ice cream, hand-crafted from an abundance of snow! We bundled, we came, we played!” ~ Diana Miller
Rossdale Community League
“The community of Rossdale hosted a winter party on March 10. The weather was beautiful and the grill was full of burgers. Firefighters from our local fire hall came out to say hello and played a few games of street hockey. Thank you to the City of Edmonton SNOW FUNd for supporting this event!” ~ Jacqueline Juselius
Lessard Community League
“What a great, sunny day for the Lessard Community Annual Family Day Winter Party this past February 18! Despite the -16°C temperature, with the gusting wind making it feel like -30°C, more than 60 community members braved the cold to skate, play hockey, and roast hot dogs, veggie dogs, smokies, and s’mores on one of the two fire pits. While warming up inside, people could listen to our guest pianist play old-time music. He played many family-favourite songs that even had some people dancing. Our rink manager, Earl, had the fires burning warmly and the ice rinks in perfect condition. At 1 p.m., the puck dropped for a fun hockey game. Players from 6 to 56 braved the cold and squared off. Two families received a door prize of a Family All-Facility Admission pass to any of the City of Edmonton’s Recreation Centres.” ~ Heather Trapp
Rutherford Elementary School
“After a one-week delay due to extremely cold weather, Rutherford Elementary School in Bonnie Doon enjoyed an afternoon of winter activities to celebrate Le Carnaval on February 22. Teams of mixed-grade students rotated through a wide variety of outdoor sports activities including tug of war, broomball, kick-sled racing and traditional indigenous games. The students were fortunate to participate in the ‘real’ maple syrup experience of making la tire – sweet, delicious, maple syrup ‘taffy’ cooled on a bed of snow. They warmed up with a delicious cup of hot chocolate and learned to play the spoons too!” ~ Nicola Tupas
Aspen Gardens Community League
“Our 2019 Winter Fest was held outside our community league hall on Sunday, March 17 (rescheduled from Feb. 24 due to extreme cold). This event included horse-drawn sleigh-rides by Longriders, outdoor kids’ activities – Capture the Flag, snow painting and apple roasting – and delicious treats like popcorn, hotdogs and hot chocolate. We tinted the ice rink green for St. Patrick’s Day, but the warm weather did not allow for skating that day. We also held registration for outdoor soccer, sign-ups for community league memberships, and raffles for a fat bike and an autographed hockey stick to raise funds for our upcoming building expansion. Concept drawings of the proposed expansion were also displayed at this event.” ~ Elizabeth Ward
Twin Brooks Community League
“Our Family Day Winter Festival was held on February 17, 2019 and was a great success. Temperatures dipped down to -20 with a wind chill of -25, but they didn’t keep people away from having fun in the snow. Sleigh-rides were busy with little ones giggling at every bump they felt on the sleigh. The team of horses was magnificent. Snow was flying as young and old raced in snowshoes to see who would win a prize. Smell of bannock and s’mores roasting over the fire pit as people gathered to warm up. We even had a Lady GaGa snow sculpture. We had 200+ participants at our festival it was a wonderful time full of laughter and rosy cheeks.” ~ Ann Johnson
Clearly, our city knows how to have fun in the snow, even in a polar vortex! So, watch our social media accounts, and our official SNOW FUNd page, for 2019/20 SNOW FUNd applications, and see what kind of fun you can plan in your ‘hood.