Peninsula Polar Fest: Freshly Frozen Fun

Categories:  Arts & Culture/Entertainment    Events
Wednesday, December 10th, 2014 at 9:00 AM
Peninsula Polar Fest: Freshly Frozen Fun by Mary Birdsong
Contributed photo

At Discover Presque Isle each July, Erieites celebrate the summer bounty of sun, sand, and waves that PI has to offer. Now that it’s December, it’s time for something a little… colder.

 The Presque Isle Partnership is hosting Polar Fest on Sunday, Dec. 14, a winter version of Discover Presque Isle, if you will, featuring indoor and outdoor activities related to the winter season.

 According to Nicole Bawol, operations manager of the PIP, “We work year round to create programs and events for our community members to enjoy… we want to make sure we are providing more than just summer activities as there is so much to enjoy about Presque Isle even during the colder months.”

But don’t worry; fires will be burning brightly in the Rotary Pavilion and all three cabins in the Waterworks area for warming and indoor fun, too.

For free outdoor fun, though, you can watch ice sculpture carvings, go on geo-cache expeditions, visit dog-sledding demonstrations, gaze upon the tree-lighting, sing carols, and take a two-mile night hike to call coyotes and owls with park naturalists. You can – for a fee – also enjoy a horse-drawn wagon ride and try out cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.

When it’s time to get toasty, you can enjoy indoor activities, like see a performance of The Night Before Christmas by the Erie Playhouse YouTheatre (Rotary Pavilion, 11 a.m.), touch feathers and fur at the naturalist area where mounted birds of prey and animals of PI with be on exhibit, craft an animal track ornament or coffee filter snowflake, and meet Santa with his North Pole pals. Refreshments, face painting, and a holiday basket raffle are also available for a fee.

For the first time, the Partnership has commissioned Presque Isle State Park Christmas ornaments, which will be available at Polar Fest for a $5 donation. All proceeds from the sale of the ornaments go directly to improving the park. Bawol says that they plan on having a new design every year so people can build a collection.

 “We thought adding an outdoor holiday festival on the Park would be a wonderful way for people to get out and enjoy the beauty of Presque Isle during the winter and get into the holiday spirit,” says Bawol.

 So if you need a nip of Jack Frost on your nose to find some holiday spirit, Polar Fest has your snowflake waiting. 

To learn more about the Presque Isle Cacher’s geocaching activities and to register, visit and scroll down to Dec 14 on the calendar. To read more about Polar Fest and the Presque Isle Partnership, visit

10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 14 //Rotary Pavilion and Waterworks area, Presque Isle State Park // Free admission; fee for some activities // 838.5144

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