Time to pull out your long johns

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Get Active, By Cathy von Kintzel

Packed schedule of fun, free, inexpensive events designed to get people active

Special to the Colchester Weekly News

Break out your warm underwear and outerwear because the Truro Winter Long John Festival is just around the corner.

This annual event hosted by Truro Parks, Recreation and Culture will be held from Feb. 2 to 8, featuring snowshoeing, orienteering, art, crafts, sledding, skating, entertainment, indoor sports and more.

“A majority of activities are free and fun for all ages,” says Cathy von Kintzel, special events and culture coordinator for Town of Truro Parks, Recreation and Culture. “Winter’s never been this much fun.”

A full list of events is available on the Town of Truro website at www.truro.ca.

As is tradition, the festival will kick off on Feb. 2 with a coasting party near the Francophone Centre and Ecole acadienne de Truro from 2 to 4 p.m. at 50 Aberdeen St. Bring your own sled and enjoy coasting and free hot chocolate, weather and snow conditions permitting.

That same day, and new this year, local members of the Orienteering Association of Nova Scotia will host a family orienteering event in Victoria Park for all ages and skill levels.

Also new this year, the Rath Eastlink Community Centre is hosting two toonie events; a community skate on Feb. 2 and a community swim on Feb. 7. The RECC will also accept donations to the Colchester Food Bank in lieu of a toonie at the skating event.

There will also be skating at the Colchester Legion Stadium throughout the week, including a free skate sponsored by Third Place Transition House in conjunction with Family Violence Prevention Week on Feb. 8.

To wrap up, the festival will conclude Feb. 8 with an afternoon celebration in Civic Square, tentatively featuring horse and wagon rides, face painting, music, balloon animals and refreshments in and around the Truro Farmers’ Market.

von Kintzel reminds people that some activities require pre-registration, including orienteering, snowshoe loans and craft night with the Marigold Guild of Needle Arts.

Festival Schedule

Feb. 2

12 noon: Orienteering adventures in Victoria Park for the entire family with local members of the Orienteering Association of Nova Scotia. All skill levels, including beginners welcome. Registration and instruction at 12 noon for a 1 p.m. start. Douglas Street Recreation Centre. Free of charge. Pre-register at 893-6078.

3-5 p.m.: Community skate for a toonie or donation to the Colchester Food Bank, Community Credit Union Arena, Rath Eastlink Community Centre.

2-4 p.m.: Coasting party for the entire family at the Centre Communautaire francophone de Truro (Francophone Centre) and Ecole acadienne de Truro, 50 Aberdeen St. Bring your own sled. Free hot chocolate. Weather, snow conditions permitting.

Feb. 3

1:15-2:15 p.m.: Free pre-schooler skating at Colchester Legion Stadium.

2:30-3:30 p.m.: Free seniors skating at Colchester Legion Stadium.

6:30-8:30 p.m.: Community outdoor skating party at Victoria Square with free hot chocolate. Weather, ice conditions permitting.

7-9 p.m.: Truro Art Society members show opening, McCarthy Hall Gallery, NSCC Truro Campus. “The Artist's View, This is What I See,” runs until Feb. 28. Storm date for opening is Feb. 4.

Feb. 4

10-11:30 a.m.: Adult recreational skating at Colchester Legion Stadium. Special $2 Festival rate per person.

7-8:30 p.m.: Free adult recreational basketball at Truro Elementary School.

7 p.m.: Guided snowshoe walk in Victoria Park with Daisy Roberts of Hub Cycle. Meet in the Truro Junior High parking lot. A limited number of snowshoes are available to borrow. Call 893-6094 to reserve or email cvonkintzel@truro.ca. 

Feb. 5

7 p.m.: Just in time for Valentine’s Day… Here’s My Heart. Create a canvas work heart stitched in two colours using Bargello stitch. Easy to do and easy to finish. All materials and instruction provided by members of the Marigold Guild of Needle Arts. Cost is $5. Douglas Street Recreation Centre. Pre-register by Feb. 3 by calling 893-6078.

7-8 p.m.: Free open gym time for children at Truro Junior High School.

8-9:15 p.m.: Free adult recreational badminton at Truro Junior High School.

Feb. 6

9:30-10:30 a.m.: Free seniors skating at Colchester Legion Stadium.

10:30-11:30 a.m.: Free pre-school skating at Colchester Legion Stadium.

7-8:30 p.m.: Free recreational badminton at Truro Elementary School.

7:30 p.m.: Old Man Luedecke onstage at the Marigold Cultural Centre. Catch Long John Festival Fever and maybe even catch your very own complimentary pair of long johns during the concert.

8-9:30 p.m.: Free adult recreational ball hockey at Douglas Street Recreation Centre.

Feb. 7

1:15 to 2:40 p.m.: Adult recreational skating at Colchester Legion Stadium. Special $2 Festival rate per person.

6 p.m.: Winter Walk. Put on your long johns, grab your flashlights and enjoy a Family Festival Frolic. We’ll walk from Douglas Street Recreation Centre, through Victoria Park and back to the centre for hot chocolate.

7:30-9:30 p.m.: Community swim for a toonie, Wilsons Aquatic Centre, Rath Eastlink Community Centre.

Feb. 8

Family Fun Festival Wrap-Up

10 a.m.:  Break out your snowshoes and enjoy a guided, group snowshoe walk in Victoria Park with Daisy Roberts from Hub Cycle. Meet in the parking lot at Truro Junior High School.

2-5 p.m.: Family fun at the Truro Farmers’ Market Building. Details are still tentative, but may include free horse and wagon rides around the Civic Block, balloon animals, face painting, music and hot chocolate.

2-5 p.m.: Have your say on what you think about walking and biking around town. Community chalkboards will be set up at the Truro Farmers’ Market where you can add your ideas and points of view on how you get around town, how you could get around town and what would make that possible.

6-7:30 p.m.: Free family skating at Colchester Legion Stadium, sponsored by Third Place Transition House in conjunction with Family Violence Prevention Week.

Lots More Fun

• Free indoor walking at Douglas Street Recreation Centre, Monday to Friday, from 8:30 to 11 a.m. Please bring indoor shoes.

• Turn Your Lights Back On: Brighten up the Winter Festival Nights by turning your Christmas lights back on for the week. And feel free to deck your halls with Long Johns.

• Cross-country skiing in Victoria Park, where there are 11 km of groomed trails. Call the hotline at 895-7078 for the latest conditions.

• Cross-country ski loans: Truro Parks, Recreation and Culture has a limited number of cross-country skis, boots and poles you can borrow. Available at Douglas Street Recreation Centre, Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Call 893-6078 for information.

• Outdoor skating at Victoria Square in Truro, and also in Bible Hill on Meadowland Drive and at Bible Hill Central Elementary School, Pictou Road. Ice conditions permitting.

For more information, contact Cathy von Kintzel at (90) 893-6094, or by email at cvonkintzel@truro.ca.

Cathy von Kintzel is the special events and culture coordinator for Town of Truro Parks, Recreation and Culture.

Organizations: Rath Eastlink Community Centre, Orienteering Association of Nova Scotia, Colchester Food Bank Third Place Transition House Douglas Street Recreation Centre Truro Junior High School Truro Elementary School Community Credit Union Arena Centre Communautaire Marigold Cultural Centre Wilsons Aquatic Centre

Geographic location: Colchester, Truro, Victoria Park Douglas Street Pictou Road

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