Photo by SHVETS Production.

And a wintry mix of other stuff

20. Ligonier Ice Fest: This annual outdoor festival on Feb. 22 and 23 includes more than 40 ice sculptures, carriage rides and two free concerts, giving revelers the chance to warm up in the Town Hall Auditorium. Big Fat Jazz performs at 2 p.m. on Feb. 22 and Candle in the Wind plays at 12:30 p.m. on Feb. 23.

21. Winterfest: Pennsylvania State Parks’ annual cold-weather festival takes place at two regional parks on Feb. 5. The Winterfest celebration at Moraine State Park takes place on the North Shore and features fun snowy and cold weather activities, entertainment, vendors and demonstrations. Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park offers sledding, wagon rides and a food truck at the Sugarloaf Sledding Area, cross country skiing at the Train Station and snowshoeing at the Kentuck Campground Amphitheater.

22. Pittsburgh Curling Club: With attention from the Winter Olympics, interest in curling rises. Pittsburgh Curling Club offers a 2-hour introductory class to the sport on its new, dedicated four-sheet ice facility. The session includes instruction on and off the ice, plus game strategy and instructed gameplay. If you love it, jump in and become a member to play in a league or join pick-up games. Wheelchair curling is available, too.

23. Sliders Ice Curling: This four-lane competitive curling facility was built behind the Millvale location of LumberjAxes. The Sliders Ice Curling experience does not include the sweeping element, but staff will facilitate and score your competition. The fun works for groups of between two and 16 players per session.


Photo courtesy of Nemacolin.

24. Dog sledding: You missed the Iditarod, but your family can have a chance at playing a musher without traveling to the Great White North. Dog sledding at Nemacolin offers a rare opportunity for the entire family. The minimum weight for kids is 45 pounds. The experience consists of a kennel tour to meet the dog sled team, followed by an exhilarating 30-minute ride led by Alaskan Husky sled dogs. Can you holler “mush?!”

Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy

Photo courtesy of the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy.

25. Backpack Lending Program: Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy’s Backpack Lending Program continues to enhance park outings. Backpacks are stuffed with materials to explore meadows, streams and forests. A winter-themed backpack helps families explore nature in cold weather, with items like hand warmers, an animal track pamphlet, hot cocoa packets and binoculars. Reservations are $10 and must be made one week in advance. Backpacks can be picked up at the Frick Environmental Center.

26. Mini-golf: Despite the cold weather, mini-golf at the RMU Island Sports Complex remains insanely competitive. With the waterfalls and stream turned off and water hazards, it’s that much easier to retrieve a runaway ball. Take advantage of the off-season rates of $5 for grownups, $4 for ages 5 and younger.