The extreme winter wind storms and whiteouts cleared just in time for a joint celebration of winter by two Combermere organizations on February 9. The Combermere Recreation Committee hosted a Festival of Outdoor Rinks while the Peterson Pathfinders Snowmobile Club hosted a Poker Run at Crooked Slide Park. Volunteers from both groups met at the Combermere Recreation Centre for food and prizes during the afternoon.
Combermere Recreation Committee member Nancy Betournay said the Festival of Outdoor Rinks started indoors with a chili cook-off and a kids’ bake-off. There were colouring sheets for the children, plus delicious chili, treats, coffee and hot chocolate for all. Outside events included a Costume Skating Party and Kids Puck-Shoot. A Snowman competition had to be cancelled because the snow was unsuitable.
Dads and daughters enjoy tbe Costume Skate: From left, Madalynn and Trevor Phanenhour, Miriana and Joseph Hamon
Peterson Pathfinders President Nolan Oram said the Poker Run was a fun way to raise funds for the Club. Unlike some other Poker Runs, participants did not need to have a sled to enter – it was open to all. Poker hands cost $10 each and every one had the opportunity to select their own 5-card hand from a full deck of face-down cards. That meant if someone wanted to beat a friend’s hand, they could pay again and try for a better hand. Oram said the sunshine brought out quite a few sledders to enjoy excellent trail conditions. The Club was responsible for providing the Poker Run prizes and expected to raise about $320 from the event.
Betournay later provided (first) names of the winners of the Festival of Outdoor Rinks:
- Chili Cook-off: 1st place Heartwood Restaurant, 2nd place Sandra, 3rd place Bev
- Kids Cereal Treat Bake-off ended in a tie: Shaelyn and Nadia
- Costume Skating: Melissa, Maddy, Cadence
- Puck shoot: Jamieson
- Festival of Outdoor Rinks colouring contest: Jackson
Both Betournay and Oram thanked the many volunteers who made the day possible. Betournay said for the first time the Combermere Recreation Committee were very pleased to have assistance from three students at Madawaska Valley District High School as part of their community volunteer hours.
Featured photo: warming up for the kids’ puck-shoot