If you think that all the best festivals and fairs are in the summer, then this weekend’s Barrie Winterfest was set out to prove you wrong! This year’s events were quite varied and whether you’re in love with the cold, or simply wanted to stay inside and sip on cocoa, there was something for you to enjoy.
Barrie Waterfront Fun
Although the weather this year was a little temperamental, here in Simcoe county we’re used to it and simply persevered. We started out our weekend activities with some wildlife interaction and made friends with both a very friendly Raccoon, and a very proud Red-Tailed Hawk. Having the chance to get up close and personal with these beautiful animals was a special treat.
Next up we wandered into the Maple Leaf Mobile Fan Zone, which brought us some authentic Maple Leaf gear straight from the Scotiabank Arena. There were highlight videos to watch, and some of the Leaf’s development staff were on hand to chat with fans. We had the chance to walk through a replica of their dressing room, and even sat down inside one of the player stalls. We’re no Mitch Marner – but we sure can dream!
The Lumberjack competition is a crowd favourite and always a highlight of the weekend. There were a number of different competitions for the skilled woodsmen to take part in, including speed chopping or axe throwing. Nothing gets the crowd’s blood moving than standing nearby while someone’s staring down the bullseye!
We kept warm throughout the day by sampling our way through the food vendors like the always delicious BeaverTails, or Birch Farms Butter Tarts. We combined them with something warm from the Hot Chocolate Trail; our weekend favourite (after testing quite a few!) was the Salty Marshmallow. The Trail runs every weekend in February and I think we need to come back at least one more time to make sure that we didn’t miss any delicious flavours.
After hours of entertainment and treats we were ready to head up into the city to find somewhere to eat, and listen to some live music courtesy of the February Blues Festival. But first on our way out of the waterfront, we just couldn’t resist stopping to make some last minute friends.
Barrie Festivals: Fun Year Round
Barrie’s Winterfest has been named one of Ontario’s Top 100 Festivals, and it’s for a good reason. Sometimes we can forget that the winter is as full of amazing outdoor events as the summer. Even though the weather didn’t fully cooperate on both days, we were thoroughly entertained from start to finish. It was a great chance to celebrate this magical winter season, and a great reason to turn off Netflix and get out of the house. We can’t wait until next year, and we hope to see you there!