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SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Bart Copeland, Andreas Grabner, Liz McMillan, Dana Gardner, Elizabeth White

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Winterlude Third Weekend Highlights

Final long weekend of activities includes cool science, hot jazz, theatre, cross-country ski races, marathon running and a graffiti jam

OTTAWA, Feb. 12, 2014 /CNW/ - Canadian Heritage is pleased to invite residents and visitors to take part in the third and final weekend of the 36th Winterlude, the Capital Region's winter celebration, which kicked off on January 31 and ends on Ontario Family Day, February 17, 2014.

Here is an overview of some of the activities taking place during the final weekend of Winterlude.

Crystal Garden in Confederation Park

Festival-goers will learn the secrets of ice carving with demonstrations on Saturday and Sunday in the Crystal Garden. Expert carvers will showcase carving techniques and how they use their tools to create a work of art from a block of ice.

Young Sculptors at Work will learn the basic techniques of ice carving with professional ice carvers. Tools, safety goggles and ice will be provided. Saturday and Sunday, 10:30 a.m. to noon (ages 8 to 12); 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. (ages 13 to 17). (Registration on site 30 minutes before start time)

Visitors to Crystal Garden will also have the opportunity to:

The Winterlude fun continues across the street at Ottawa City Hall all weekend with:

Snowflake Kingdom in Jacques-Cartier Park, Gatineau

Presented by Canadian Heritage and the Ville de Gatineau, Snowflake Kingdom is North America's biggest snow playground. It is the ideal destination for the young and the young at heart. This family-friendly paradise features giant snow slides and an outdoor amphitheatre.

On Winterlude's final weekend, visitors will have the chance to:

  • hold an official torch from the Vancouver 2010 Winter Games and take a seat in a bobsleigh for a unique photo opportunity
  • experience downhill skiing with qualified instructors and learn important tips for the slopes from the Canadian Ski Patrol
  • take shots at the sledge hockey display, snap a souvenir photo and meet former members of Canada's National Sledge Hockey Team
  • meet players from the Gatineau Olympiques hockey team for an autograph session
  • visit the Aboriginal Village and interactive exhibit "Winter Camp Life," featuring a display of tools for survival in the wintertime and a winter game called "snowsnake"
  • join a bundles' race like a voyageur from the past in the Parks Canada Zone
  • live the adventure of the Aboriginal trappers, French-Canadian coureurs des bois, and European merchants of the fur-trade era at Maison Charron
  • see graffiti art at its best
  • test their physical fitness in the Canadian Forces Winter Obstacle Course
  • laugh and dance along with talented performers at the Snowflake Stage
  • try a kicksled, and discover the outdoor activity that millions of Scandinavians love
  • build a snow lantern and when the sun sets, discover the park at night
  • visit the XTREME Zone, where they can try a zip line, bungee trampoline, pedal go-karts on snow, and a giant maze

The Ice Hog Family, Winterlude's famous mascots, will be on hand all weekend, including Monday, to meet their fans of all ages. Sunday at 3:30 p.m., a special celebration is planned for Noumi and Nouma's birthday.

The Rideau Canal Skateway

The Rideau Canal Skateway, the world's largest skating rink, is centre stage for many activities during Winterlude's final weekend.

Open for its 44th season, this fantastic 7.8-kilometre ice surface offers families and fun-seekers a wide variety of services, including rest areas, food concessions, skate and sleigh rentals, skate sharpening, and boot check services.

This weekend, visitors to the Skateway will have the opportunity to test their skills at the Giant Tiger Interactive Hockey Zone, move their muscles at the Goodlife Fitness Zone, or warm up with hot apple cider and play the OLG Sno-Bus Snowball Toss game at the OLG Sno-Bus Station at Fifth Avenue.

Programming Partners

For the 36th Winterlude, more than 90 programming partners from Ottawa-Gatineau's private and public sectors have come together to offer visitors a wide range of indoor and outdoor activities aimed at bringing the Capital to life like never before.

Here is a sampling of what takes place on the third weekend of Winterlude:

Associated Links

Follow Winterlude on Twitter @Winterlude #Winterlude and on Facebook.

For more information about Winterlude, call 613-239-5000, 613-239-5090 (TTY), 1-800-465-1867 (toll free) or 1-866-661-3530 (toll free TTY), or visit www.winterlude.gc.ca.

SOURCE Canadian Heritage

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