Decision on sled dog races Wednesday

By BRIAN FERRY

bferry@timesobserver.com

The show must go on, but for the dog sled races to be held, the snow must go on – quickly and heavily.

Wintry weather took the day off Sunday, and that could mean the slate of Winterfest events will be reduced this weekend.

However, no matter the weather, there will be a Winterfest.

Activities begin Friday with Meet the Mushers at the Kalbfus Rod and Gun Club, including a spaghetti dinner.

There may not be much mushing. The sled dog races are scheduled throughout the weekend.

The races, among the marquee Winterfest events, may be called off if there is not enough snow on the ground.

According to Winterfest Executive Committee Secretary Walt Atwood, “In order for us to have any (sled dog races) this weekend, we would have to have a good foot of snow.”

That snow would have to be packed down to provide an appropriate surface for racing, he said.

“It does not look good,” Atwood said on Monday. “There’s nothing in the forecast to suggest that.”

The final call on the races will be made Wednesday evening.

The races – and other events that depend on cold and snow ice fishing, ice skating, ski-joring, sledding – may be canceled, but the event will not. “There will still be Winterfest activities, regardless of what the decision is on the sled dog races,” Atwood said.

Meet the Mushers will be held even if the races are called off.

Family events, the Polar Bear Plunge, and other events that can be held with or without snow and ice will be held. “Food and craft vendors will be in the big event tent,” Atwood said. “Winterfest will go on both Saturday and Sunday regardless of the weather.”