Snow skating, hockey and hot chocolate at Pembroke’s sunny Winterfest

Abigail Parks, 19, an advanced pre-health student, felt that she had a good chance of receiving a prize after she skillfully launched a hockey puck out of her hand on the rink. Parks was participating in the chuck-a-puck activity, which was one of the many activities offered during the full-day Winterfest event at Algonquin’s Pembroke […]
Photo: Brenden Laframboise
Mackenzie White, an action sports and park development student, uses the hill he designed with his classmates. There was a light turnout for the outdoor hill.

Abigail Parks, 19, an advanced pre-health student, felt that she had a good chance of receiving a prize after she skillfully launched a hockey puck out of her hand on the rink.

Parks was participating in the chuck-a-puck activity, which was one of the many activities offered during the full-day Winterfest event at Algonquin’s Pembroke campus on Feb. 19.

The objective of the game is to throw a puck towards the center of the ice. The puck closest to the middle won a $250 pre-paid gift card, second place received a $100 pre-paid card and third place received a $50 pre-paid card.

“I was pretty close, maybe second or third,” Parks said.

Parks won third place.

The event, which is meant to be a celebration of all that winter has to offer, was put on by Jodi Bucholtz, the events coordinator.

“The event is for all students to see the joys of winter,” she said with a smile. She said that the event happens annually and it has been happening ever since she began working with the college over ten years ago.

Activities included bumper cars, a wrecking ball and snow skating.

The snow skating hill is was designed and created by the action sports and parks development program. Students created three separate runs down the hill.

Lucas Marsala, 23, a student in the program, spent the previous day with his classmates putting the hill together.

Snow skating, however, looks a little different than what skiers or snowboarders are used to seeing. “It’s like the deck of a skateboard,” he explained. “Without boots or clamps. Just a helmet.”

Mackenzie White, an action sports and park development student, uses the hill he designed with his classmate. There was a light turnout for the outdoor hill.
Mackenzie White, an action sports and park development student, uses the hill he designed with his classmates. There was a light turnout for the outdoor hill. Photo credit: Brenden Laframboise

After you sign a waiver, you are good to go down the hill. Marsala and his classmates used the hill for snowboarding and skiing for most of the day.

Winterfest also had an ice carver come down from Winterlude to do a sculpture for the event. The sculpture was done by Ikuo Kanbayashi. The sculpture, a butterfly and a flower, took Kanbayashi roughly two hours to complete.

“You should see it tomorrow,” he said. “The ice looks better after it sits.”

Nearby – but not too close to the sculpture – there was a fire pit where students and staff roasted marshmallows. The wood added to the fire was cut by the logger sports students. A hot chocolate stand was up and ready for those in need of a warm treat.

The festival also featured staff-versus-student hockey games. The women’s game was won by the students 9-2 and the students won the men’s game 9-3.

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