La Farge, Wis.

Free outdoor and indoor activities for the entire family will be offered during the 20th anniversary Winter Festival at the Kickapoo Valley Reserve Fri.-Sat. A frozen light parade at 6 p.m. Fri. signals the official start of the weekend festival, and folks can stop by Mill Street before and after the parade for ice skating and a Christmas tree bonfire. Starting at 8 a.m. Sat., visitors can watch a sled dog race and weight pull (weather permitting), explore an ice cave, try or watch snow carving, or ride a horse-drawn bobsled. Guests can bring their well-behaved leashed dog and enter the pet in the dog sled mutt run. Other activities include sledding and chili- and bread-making contests. (

Thief River Falls, Minn.

Enjoy more winter fun during the city’s inaugural Ice Fest Fri.-next Sun. Festivities begin at 5 p.m. Fri. with a fire and ice social offering food and drink specials and live music at the River Walk Public House. On Sat., a vintage snowmobile ride and social starts at 10 a.m., followed by a 5-10K walk/run, fat tire bike race and cross-country ski and snowshoe treks. Other events held around the city include hockey, skating and more. A winter whiskers beard and mustache contest will also be held Sat. from 4-8:30 p.m. Find live music from 9 p.m 1 a.m. at the Eagles Club. The fest ends Sun. with a brunch, more sports contests, snow coloring, snowblower races and a club skating show (trf

Hackensack, Minn.

Back to Hack Winter Festival will be held Jan. 16-19. On Thu. and Fri. a medallion hunt begins at 10 a.m. A meat raffle will be held at 6 p.m. Thu. and bingo starts at 7 p.m. Fri. Most of the events will be held on Sat., including a fun/run/walk, chili feed, ice fishing contest on Birch Lake and snow sculpting. (

Colleen A. Coles