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Snow not a problem for this year’s Candlelight Ski event

With the area receiving heavy snowstorms that started before Thanksgiving, conditions shouldn’t be a problem for the annual Community Candlelight Ski and Sledding that takes place Saturday, Feb. 15.

Beginning at 3 p.m., families can bring their sleds to the Brunet Island State Park sledding hill (beach hill). The fun continues, as, at 5 p.m., cross country skiing or snowshoe hiking takes place around the park, all by candles lighting the way on the groomed trails.

“Lack of snow should not be a problem this year,” said park manager Zach Thon. “This is a family-friendly event that has something for everyone.”

Thon says the terrain for snowshoes and skis is very gentle, and accommodating for people of all skill levels.

“There will also be food and refreshments in the (beach hill) pavilion, and fires to warm up by when you are done,” said Thon.

Park admission fees will be waived for the event, and skis and snowshoes are available if people don’t have their own equipment.

The free day is sponsored by the park, Cornell-Lake Holcombe Community Ed, Cornell Lions Club, Cornell Area Betterment Association (CABA) and by the Cornell-Holcombe Pack 2 Cub Scouts, who are in charge of a cardboard sled race.

“Folks can put their creativity to the test for this fun local event,” said Kayla Olmstead, race organizer. “The Brunet Island tubing hill is always an entertaining time.”

Racing starts at 4 p.m. that day, and a sled must pass inspection before it can take part in the race. The sled must be free of sharp edges, pointy objects or any “dangerous” feature. Only corrugated cardboard can be used, held together with tape and glue.

The sled cannot be wrapped in plastic or anything else.

Awards will be given out for the most attractive entry, for the fastest sled (down the hill) and for team spirit, where team members dress to match the theme of their sled.

For questions on the contest, Olmstead can be reached at 715-312-0969.

Since last year’s event had to be canceled from lack of snow, Thon hopes an abundance of people bundle up and join the fun this time around.

“A few years back, we had a beautiful day and approximately 250-300 people attended the event,” said Thon. “If we could meet, or beat that, that would be great.”