Winter Festival Set to Entertain in North Bennington
The annual North Bennington Winter Festival will be held Saturday, January 16, starting at 10:30 a.m. This is a yearly Bennington Area Chamber of Commerce event that draws out locals, visitors, shops and the community to gather and share in some fun during the winter months. The day starts with the Penguin Plunge, a Special Olympics event that sees swimmers diving into the freezing cold waters of Lake Paran in order to raise funds for the Olympics. The actual Plunge will happen at 11 a.m. at the Lake Paran Boat Launch, but visitors and plungers are welcome to show up at 7 a.m. for cocoa and registration. For information or to register visit penguinplunge.org/north-bennington.
One of the major events every year is the ice sculpture competition at the North Bennington train depot, in which various local organizations carve beautiful designs out of massive blocks of ice. Prizes will be awarded for Most Creative, Most Artistic and People’s Choice. The committee is still looking for teams to participate. The competition will start at 7 a.m./, with judging at 2 p.m. To register a team visit bennington.com/winterfest-2014.
Visitors will also find a Girl Scouts booth with arts, crafts, hot drinks and a bake sale. The Manchester Rod and Gun Club will have a table to promote the upcoming Primitive Biathlon, consisting of snowshoeing and target shooting, held to fund scholarships for children to attend Green Mountain Conservation Camp with the Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife. Check out svtpb.org
The Village School of North Bennington will host its annual Winter Carnival from noon to 4 p.m. with fun and games for kids of all ages. The Norshaft Lions will be hosting a Chili Fest at the Catholic Church on Houghton Street to help with their fundraising efforts. With over 30 chili cooks expected to take part, this is a must-attend event. The tasting goes from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.
At 10:30 a.m.,the Library will feature a penguin-themed story time and community craft project. Weather permitting, they will also host snow painting in the lot behind the Library.
Kevin’s Sports Pub and Restaurant will have food and drink specials and music during the evening, Powers Market will offer sandwiches and a snowflake activity, and North Bennington Variety will have a chilidog special. Weather permitting, a wagon ride will stop at each of the sites around the village.
“This is a great, annual event that gets people up and out of their houses and connecting with other community members,” stated Matt Harrington, the new executive director of the Bennington Area Chamber of Commerce. “Although this is my first time at the helm of such a project, I have enjoyed Winterfest for many years. I was amazed at how much the small community of North Bennington quickly comes together and puts on this great event in such a wintery month. This is possible because of the volunteers, sponsors and engagement by the community. I am very proud of the volunteers that make this happen every year.” Lindy Lynch, owner of Kevin’s Restaurant and lead organizer of the event said, “I love this yearly event. It’s great for all ages. I like the collaborative effort of all the various groups.” Maps and information will be available at various locations around North Bennington including the Bennington Area Chamber of Commerce membership and welcome center on Veterans Memorial Drive.