Halifax is embracing winter with its first Waterfront Winterfest this weekend. The free outdoor festival will feature skating, curling, snowboarding, skiing and a giant screen to watch every second of Olympic glory, including the men's hockey final and the closing ceremonies.
Caryla Lutz, event manager for Waterfront Development Corporation Ltd., says business is not traditionally booming on the waterfront in winter, so businesses decided to throw a booming party to lure Haligonians downtown Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
We are working on three venues on the waterfront, says Lutz.
Bishop's Landing will host snow hackers on Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. The extreme snow sculpting demonstration will feature a team of artists transforming two 10-foot snow blocks into Olympic-themed sculptures.
The parking lot behind the Waterfront Warehouse will be transformed into the CTV Winter Games Park. This is the marquee area for the event, Lutz says. The annual snowboarding and skiing favourite Urban Butter Showcase will move to the waterfront park to join the fun. Athletes will practice Friday and Saturday afternoon and compete Friday and Saturday night. The Warehouse will hold a cover-charge party after the event the only part of the festival that'll cost you money.
The park will have computers feeding live coverage from the Vancouver Olympics and a chance to volunteer for next year's Canada Winter Games in Halifax. Curlers will offer demonstrations of their sport and even let visitors throw a rock or two while a ball-hockey tournament put on by the Halifax Sport and Social Club cranks up the energy.
We have a huge, outdoor inflatable screen, Lutz adds. As soon as it gets dark, it'll will broadcast live from Vancouver. That includes gold medal events, the men's hockey final and the closing ceremonies.
The area will also have an outdoor skating rink. It's synthetic ice. You can actually skate on this ice whether it's minus 30 or plus 30, she says. Skating is free and you need to bring your own skates no rentals or shoes but Feed Nova Scotia is taking donations.
Waterfront Winterfest is a great opportunity to get out and enjoy some good, healthy fun, and by collecting non-perishable food items it's also a great way to help others, says Dianne Swinemar, executive director for Feed Nova Scotia.