Late Report! This was actually two Saturdays ago, on January 8th, but there’s been so much cool stuff going on…okay, I was just lazy. Oh, naughty Zeus!
Recently the Hubby and I went to the 2011 Lake Harriet Winter Kite Festival. I learned about the event over at 22 Words and at the Minneapolis Parks and Recreation website.
Previously on the blog I’m
complained expounded on my general disdain for winter activities because…umm… you have to frickin’ freeze to enjoy them. BUT I am pleased to announce that I had a really great time. There were no clouds in the sky, the sun was shining and we bundled up to stay warm. I bundled up a LOT. I had on gym leggings, jeans, a t-shirt, a long-sleeve t-shirt, a sweatshirt, a coat, hats, gloves and my warmest boots.
We arrived at the festival around noon just as things were starting up. There were already a few people on the ice and maybe 4-5 kites were up. It was a pretty nice set-up. There were several tents and stands and the organizers had arranged a free marshmallow roast, free hot chocolate and cider, they were giving away little plastic kites to kids and they were well-staffed with volunteers. Pssst: Click on any photo to make it crazy big.
The wind wasn’t being all that cooperative, but we managed to get our little kite up for a few minutes.
Okay, I may have been optimistic when I said we got the kite “up” for “a few minutes”.
After the kite flying we headed over to the Minnesota DNR tent where they were holding ice fishing demos.
It was kind of funny to watch; there was a lot of activity inside the tent, probably because it was heated. There was one guy who looked SUPER into the whole ice fishing deal; he would glare at the hole in the ice and look up in frustration every time a kid would squeal or somebody would brush by him. Also, we witnessed the amazing flash transformation of super-excited kids into super-bored kids. They were practically jumping with excitement as they were handed the short ice fishing poles and the line dropped into the water, and after about 30 seconds of not catching anything they’d start to get fidgety, and then the complaining started. I couldn’t blame them – that’s pretty much how I feel about ice fishing.
Ice fishing holes! The first picture is of a hole that was drilled outside of the main tent. The second picture is of an ice fishing hole that was drilled inside a small black tent. It turned out to be accidentally cool and Tron-esque because of how the low light in the tent, the bright sun shining in from the open tent bottom and my confused camera worked together.
The other thing happening at the DNR tent was snowshoeing! The tour guide helped the Hubby and I and another couple with two small boys get our feet into the snowshoes, which was not as easy as it might sound. But eventually, we did it.
And then we were off. We walked across the ice to a bird sanctuary located on the north end of Lake Harriet. The guide lead us off trail so that we could experience snowshoeing through fresh snow. It was a neat feeling; I sunk down further in the snow than I thought I would, but the broad, flat shoe distributed my weight so that I didn’t sink down to my knees as I would have in regular boots. And, I only fell once. Ta-da!
The snowshoeing tour was about 30 minutes long. After we got back to the DNR tent we walked around and did a little kite and people watching.
And to end the day we roasted a few marshmallows:
There were a ton of people with some very pretty cameras on the ice that day – gigantic lenses and camera bags galore! These websites have some fancy pictures that I suspect were taken with SLR cameras that had…like…zoom…and adjustable apertures…and stuff.
An awesome video that was filmed with an old-timey effect.