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WinterFest 2014

By , - Last modified: February 14, 2014 at 2:34 PM

The abundance of snow that's been inundating us this winter is unbelievable, but it hasn't put a burden on outdoor recreation in the area.

So after all of that hard work shoveling out our vehicles, clearing sidewalks and even lending a hand to neighbors, give yourself a pat on the back this weekend and reward yourself with some fun.

And since we're already used to the frigid temperatures (where hitting above a freezing 32 degrees almost feels like summer), why not enjoy some outdoor festivities?

Beautiful downtown Jim Thorpe (my hometown) this Presidents Day Weekend will host WinterFest 2014 this Saturday and Sunday.

Presented by the Jim Thorpe Tourism Agency, WinterFest 2014 will showcase everything from wood- and ice-carving demonstrations to live music and children's shows to horse-drawn carriage rides … and even Civil War re-enactments.

On both days, wood-carving demonstrations will be held by Masters of the Chainsaw, a group of the nation's top professional chainsaw sculptors dedicated to promoting and preserving the integrity of the art form and its performance. The sculptures created will be available for sale at the train station this Sunday beginning at 4 p.m. Proceeds benefit the Jim Thorpe Tourism Agency.

Ice-carving demonstrations by Sculpted Ice Works will be held Saturday and Sunday in Asa Packer Park and at the Opera House Square.

Live music will be held indoors (thankfully) at the Mauch Chunk Opera House. Friday and Saturday will feature Tusk, the ultimate Fleetwood Mac tribute. Sunday will feature Memories of Elvis.

Children's entertainment will be provided by Al Grout, a sensational entertainer who has been performing since 1977, doing more than 200 shows per year. Carrying a reputation as one of the most entertaining jugglers around, Grout will have shows on Saturday and Sunday. Saturday's show will be held at the Opera House and Sunday's will be at the Mauch Chunk Museum (50 yards up Broadway past the Opera House). Both shows are scheduled for 2 p.m.

Also available this year is the Famous Jim Thorpe Mug Walk. Patrons can buy a souvenir Jim Thorpe Mug at the train station for $10 (benefits the Jim Thorpe Tourism Agency). It is a white mug tastefully trimmed in maroon and features a color version of the Jim Thorpe Victorian logo. Businesses throughout town will fill your mug … for free!

Topping off the array of activities are horse-drawn carriage rides. Although these rides are weather permitting, you could have an opportunity to go back in time and explore downtown like it was back in the early days.

So, instead of sitting at home with a cop of hot cocoa this weekend, why not take advantage of some hard-earned recreational fun? Jim Thorpe is the place to be.

For more information on the event, visit http://www.jimthorpe.org/wfest.htm

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Christopher Holland

Christopher Holland

Christopher Holland is a researcher for Lehigh Valley Business and blogs on arts and entertainment in the region.

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