SKOWHEGAN — Outdoor winter fun is the theme of Somerset SnowFest, a celebration of all things winter, Friday through Sunday, Feb. 28-March 1, in the Skowhegan area, according to a news release from Main Street Skowhegan.

Lead sponsor Hight Family of Dealerships and event organizers Lake George Regional Park and Main Street Skowhegan have joined forces to bring a weekend chock-full of activities to the region.

“SnowFest will feature so many fun and unique things to do outside, even in the dead of winter,” said Kristina Cannon, executive director of Main Street Skowhegan. “We are working — in partnership with Lake George and several other organizations — to get more people outside and active and to transform Skowhegan into an outdoor recreation mecca, and Somerset SnowFest is a great example of this effort.”

A flagship event of Somerset SnowFest, Skijor Skowhegan is New England’s only equestrian skijoring competition. In its second year, the race has expanded to 30 teams. For each team, a horse and rider will pull a skier or snowboarder down a track with gates and jumps at the Skowhegan Fairgrounds, 33 Constitution Ave., on Saturday, Feb. 29. Teams will compete from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.  for cash prizes, underwritten by Franklin Savings Bank. Skijor Skowhegan is presented by Baxter Brewing and coordinated by Main Street Skowhegan. Food — including samples from an on-site chili cook-of — and beer and wine will be available for purchase. Parking at the fairgrounds is $5 per vehicle, though admission to the event is free. Skijor Skowhegan event partners also include Hemphill’s Horses, Feed, and Saddlery and NewGen Powerline Construction.

Lake George Regional Park in Skowhegan/Canaan will host several activities on the lake and on its expanded trail network. Thrill seekers and adventure lovers can compete in the inaugural downhill kayak race (Saturday) or the winter triathlon (Sunday), sponsored by Redington-Fairview General Hospital and featuring a course with cross-country skiing, fat biking, and snowshoeing. Annual favorites such as the kids’ box sled race (Saturday) and the ice fishing derby (Sunday) are back, and Sunday will feature the new lakeside Frostbite Bar, complete with Allen’s Coffee Flavored Brandy specialty drinks.

Sunday afternoon also brings free dog sled rides, sledding, and hot cocoa to Coburn Park on Water Street in downtown Skowhegan, because of the generosity of Reny’s.

The weekend will feature plenty of opportunities to enjoy local food and drink—all in outdoor settings. Partners at the Jim Browne Foundation will kick off the weekend Friday afternoon with a party at Lakewood Golf Course, 803 Lakewood Road, in Madison, featuring nordic skiing, snowshoeing, a bonfire, food, beer, and wine. Skowhegan restaurant The Miller’s Table, 42 Court St., will turn their outdoor courtyard, situated in the former Somerset County Jail, into an ice bar Friday and Saturday with all-you-can-eat pizza specials, fire and ice cocktails, luge drinks, Crooked Face Creamery cheese tasting, menu specials, homemade marshmallow roasting, and more.

For a complete list of Somerset SnowFest activities, visit somersetsnowfest.org.

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