Travel Wisconsin: Winter fairs and festivals

Winterfest & U.S. National Snow Sculpting Competition, Lake Geneva – Jan. 28-Feb. 12
 
Lake Geneva hosts a two-week festival that celebrates art and winter fun. It also features the U.S. National Snow Sculpting Competition.
 
- Snow sculptors from around the county compete for a national title, and the competition is open to the public so attendees can watch sculptors transform huge blocks of snow into intricate sculptures.
 
The festival also includes Winterfest featuring a Human Dog Sled Race, The Abominable Snow Race, magic shows, helicopter rides, a chili cook-off. 
 
 
Hudson’s Hot Air Affair is the Midwest’s premier winter ballooning event. 
 
- Hundreds of visitors head to the St. Croix Valley to see the mass ascension of more than 30 hot air balloons of all different shapes and sizes. 
 
- If the weather permits, the balloons will light up the night sky at the Moonglow event on Saturday night. 
  - There’s still a “Field of Fire” when it’s too windy for the balloons to go up.
 
Weekend events also include the Up, Up & Away 5K run, fireworks and smooshboarding competition, where four people (usually dressed in a themed costume) strap themselves to a set of skis or parallel boards and race through an obstacle course. The first team to cross the finish line with all four members strapped into their skis/boards wins. 
 
- Don’t miss the Torchlight Parade on Friday night. During the Torchlight parade, all the hot air balloon pilots drive down Hudson’s main street and shoot fire out of the burners.
 
 
Kites aren’t just for summer! Sky Circus on Ice features some of the greatest kite performers in the world sailing their colorful kites above the frozen Delavan Lake. 
 
- The grand launch takes place at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday, when the experts will show synchronized performances with their kites. 
 
- The event includes kite making workshops and kite flying demos with the experts, who will share tricks on how to fly a kite in the gustier winter winds. 
 
Attendees can also see expert ice and snow carvers making sculptures along the shores of Lake Lawn Resort. 
 
 
Every year the town of Drummond, in Bayfield County, hosts the Barstool Races. 
 
- Participants decorate their bar stool-on-skis and set off in head-to-head competition down a man-made ski hill. 
 
- Spectators can enjoy homemade chili, cold beer while they cheer on the craziest looking bar stool. 
 
Funds raised from this event go towards snowmobile grooming in the Drummond area. 
 
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