The 38th edition of Winterlude winds up on Monday, February 15 in Gatineau and Ottawa. Until then, there’s a great lineup of activities for every taste and every member of the family, from Winterlude classics to new events and my own personal favourites!

Winterlude classics

Though new activities are introduced every year, thetraditional favourites remain, including the Super Slides at the Snowflake Kingdom. Sliders of all ages are invited to zoom down the Chinook in a single or double tube, and plunge down the Iceberg or the Glacier on your bum! Also popular at the Snowflake Kingdom are the giant snow sculptures (this year’s theme is “Discover the Great Canadian North”). Across the river in Ottawa, the ice sculptures created at the Crystal Garden in Confederation Park are a highlight of the festival. Ice carvers from around the world turn blocks of ice into stunning works of art. At night, coloured lights reveal the magical beauty of the ice sculptures.And don’t forget to say hi to the Winterlude mascots, the Ice Hog family. On Sunday, February 14 at 12:30 p.m., come to a birthday party for Noumi and Nouma, the Ice Hog twins, and celebrate winter in good company!

New this year

One of the year’s top family animated movies, Snowtime(La Guerre des tuques 3D)will be featured Friday through Monday at the Snowflake Kingdom. Discover the joys of playing outside with your favourite characters, and explore the giant snow fort built specially for the occasion! This year, for the first time, the Snowflake Kingdom is open until 9 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. The snow slides are lit up, and the colourful multimedia presentation Between Sky and Sea brings a huge snow sculpture to life. Don’t miss it!

My top picks

And now for my personal favourites … Those who know me will tell you that as far as I’m concerned, Winterlude just wouldn’t be Winterlude without a BeaverTail. Take a break during your visit to enjoy a delicious BeaverTail pastry. Sticky faces, sticky fingers—it’s all part of the Winterlude experience! My second pick is definitely the XTREME Zone. I had a fabulous time zipliningover the crowd (yes, I screamed). And I guarantee your kids will absolutely love the dog sled rides. You’ve got to try this unique activity at least once in your life!

With all of these suggestions, you’re sure to have a fantastic Winterlude weekend in the National Capital Region.

Cover photo: Catherine Perras

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