Archived Outdoors

Celebrate winter Smoky-style

out winterfestWinterFest Smoky Style will return for its second year Saturday, Feb. 27, at the Maggie Valley Festival Grounds, injecting the February doldrums with the excitement of sled dog racing, timber sports and music.

From 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., the grounds will be alive with demonstrations from sled dogs, law enforcement K-9 dogs, the Haywood Community College Timbersports Team, the International Weight Pull Association and live music from a rotating cast of homegrown acts.

Gates open at 10 a.m., with opening ceremonies at 10:30 a.m. by Cherokee Beloved Man Jerry Wolfe and ROTC groups from Pisgah and Tuscola high schools. The event will conclude with a bonfire before it ends at 6 p.m. 

The Saturday festival will be the most visible portion of the WinterFest celebration, but not the only one. 

• The Strand at 38 Main in Waynesville will have a special showing of “The Great Alone” — a documentary telling the inspiring comeback story of champion sled dog racer Lance Mack on the Alaska tundra — at 7 p.m. Feb. 26 and 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. Feb. 27.

• A hearty breakfast with the sled dog mushers — and a chance to hang out with the dogs afterward — will be held 8 to 9:30 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 28, at Cataloochee Ranch outside Maggie Valley. 

• The long-standing Wild Game Dinner hosted by the student Wildlife Club at Haywood Community College coincides with WinterFest weekend and is being tied in as a related event as well. Held at 6 p.m. Friday, Feb. 26, at the Haywood County Fair Grounds.

Organized by the Haywood County Tourism Development Authority.

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