U.P. Winter Festival Fun for Everyone Starts January

When you love winter like we do in the U.P., it’s natural to turn almost every weekend in January and February into a party. Of course, if you want to create something new and spontaneous to do with family and friends, you can make your own Snow Angel Festival on a Lake Michigan beach, Snow Castle Building on Lake Gogebic, Winter Binocular Fest (seeking birds/wildlife) … just name your festival, pick a date and location, then post it on our Facebook, Twitter and Google+ pages and see who comes. We’re always up for sharing good times! Here are a few of our planned favorites — hope you will join us:

  • Jan. 18: Heikki Lunta Festival. Celebrate the legendary Finnish snow god with a fishing derby, fireworks and more.
  • Jan 30-Feb 2: Michigan Ice Fest, Munising. This ice climbing celebration at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, sponsored by La Sportiva, is one of the newest festivals in our lineup. La Sportiva is sending Will Mayo, who has an impressive list of ascents under his crampons, to provide tips and stories. It’s a great weekend to learn about and experience this exhilarating sport.
  • Feb 5-9: 93rd Annual Michigan Tech University Winter Carnival, Houghton. This is by far one of our oldest festivals in the U.P. So, if you want to shake off the winter blahs, it’s the weekend and place to do it. See the famous snow statues, enjoy a host of sporting events, watch the torch light parade and fireworks, attend the Snow-Ball and more.
  • Feb 7-9: 75th Annual Pine Mountain Ski Jumping Tournament, Iron Mountain. Here is your chance to see incredible athletes from all over the world go airborne in this Continental Cup competition. One of the highlights is the tailgate party at the bottom of the hill … biggest one of the winter!
  • Feb 13-16: 53rd Annual Snowfest — Les Cheneaux Islands, Hessel. This 70s-themed weekend features an ice fishing contest, chili cook-off, horse-drawn hay rides, dog show, emergency services ice rescue demo, food, kids’ games, Frosty 5 & 10K and much more!
  • Feb 14-15: Mardi Gras De Snow, Paradise. It’s a snowmobile festival of games, races, music and food for the whole family.
  • Feb 22: 21st Ever Trenary Outhouse Classic, Trenary. Nothing warms the spirit like a hearty winter laugh. Come see homemade outhouses of wood, cardboard, old car parts, grand piano crates … you name it … race for cash prizes. The entire family will love the festivities and food, too. So get your “rumps” off that couch and join us on George Washington’s Birthday!
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