The heart of winter is upon us, so now’s the time to get out there and have some fun. We’ve rounded up a bunch of wintry things to do, some outdoors and a few out of the elements. Mark up your calendar and have a blast out there.

10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Jan. 28. Camden Public Library Amphitheatre & Harbor Park.
Have a crazy good time cooling your heels up in Camden during its annual Winterfest. Events and activities include an ice carving competition, canine fashion show, polar plunge that includes a portable sauna, local food vendors, craft stations, face painting, a story walk for kids and live music. Then, when it’s over, you’ll look around and realize you’re in the wonderful town of Camden with many restaurants to choose from and other things to see.

Two Peas team members Kristina Patterson of Kennebunk and her sister Roxanne Doyer, back, of Mechanic Falls get a push during their run at the 31st annual U.S. National Toboggan championships at Camden Snow Bowl. Derek Davis/Staff Photographer

U.S. National Toboggan Championships
Feb. 3-5. Camden Snow Bowl, 20 Barnestown Road.
You really have to be there to understand what a fun vibe exudes from the three-day U.S. National Toboggan Championships at Camden Snow Bowl. The competition is fierce, but the camaraderie rich and welcoming. The racing categories are two-person, three-person, four-person and experimental. Costumes are not required, but you’ll get bigger cheers from the crowd if you wear them as you travel at breakneck speed down the chute and onto the ice of Hosmer Pond.

Teams named Hat-trick Swayze, in green, and the Bad Knees Bears play on Feb. 13, 2021 during the Maine Pond Hockey Classic on Snow Pond in Sidney. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

Maine Pond Hockey Classic
Feb. 3-5. Snow Pond Center for the Arts, Sidney.
Dress for the cold and be ready to cheer during the state’s biggest pond hockey tournament. Four divisions of teams will be facing off, all in the name of fun. Be sure to bring your I.D., because if you’re over 21, you can enjoy some cold ones in the beer garden. Food will be available for all at the Snow Pond cafe. Want to participate? You can, if you’re over 18 and register in advance.

Hundreds of attendees gather in front of the town hall during the 10th annual Biddeford WinterFest in 2022. Derek Davis/Staff Photographer

Biddeford WinterFest
Feb. 3-5. Downtown locations, Biddeford.
Biddeford WinterFest has been a tradition since 2012, and it’s a three-day celebration. Things kick off on Friday night during the adults-only sledding party from 6-7:30 p.m. Have unfettered fun as you slide down the Adams Street sledding hill at City Hall. Sleds will be provided. Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. is the kid-centric part of the weekend, with sledding, performances, food vendors, free hot cocoa and a bicycle raffle. On Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., head to West Brook rink for a day of skating.

Sugarloaf in Carrabassett Valley. Gregory Rec/Staff Photographer

Fire on the Mountain
Feb. 3-5. Sugarloaf Mountain Outdoor Center, Carrabassett Valley.
If you love the Grateful Dead as much as you love skiing and snowboarding, this is the weekend you’ve been waiting for. Fire on the Mountain celebrates the music of the iconic rock band along with its leader, Jerry Garcia, over the course of three days. Bands play in The Widowmaker and the King Pine Room, and there’s a daily afternoon performance open to all ages. Evening shows are 21-plus, and tie-dye shirts are entirely optional. Featured musical acts are Don’t Let Go, Marcus Rezak’s Shred is Dead, The Maine Dead Project, Widowmaker All-Stars, Lazy Lightning, Rose Alley, John Kadlecik and Box Of Chocolates.


Portland On Tap
Noon to 4 p.m. Feb. 4. Cross Insurance Arena, 1 Civic Center Square, Portland, $42.50, $65, $10 designated driver, 21-plus.
Craft beer fans had best grab tickets before they disappear. Portland On Tap is a gigantic gathering featuring plenty of beer sampling, as well as live music and food vendors. Choose the regular three-hour session or VIP four-hour session, and get ready to imbibe the afternoon away. Tickets for designated drivers are only $10, so you can make good life choices. The long list of participating breweries includes Battery Steele, Black Pug, Footbridge, Nonesuch River and Stone Brewing.

Banff Centre Mountain Film Festival World Tour
7 p.m. Feb. 10 & 11. State Theatre, 609 Congress St., Portland, $23 in advance, $26 day of event, $20 students in advance, $22 students day of.
The Banff Centre Mountain Film Festival is one of the best ways to travel to more than 40 countries without leaving your seat. The mountain-themed films will take your breath away as you’re exposed to exotic and remote cultures by way of extreme, often gravity-defying sports. The tour also stops at The Gracie Theatre in Bangor on Feb. 7, The Grand in Ellsworth Feb. 3-5, and Maine Sport Outfitters in Rockport Feb. 10-12.

Flavors of Freeport
Feb. 17 & 18. The Hilton Garden Inn, 5 Park St., Freeport, $30, $50 for both signature events, 21-plus.
Flavors of Freeport is an annual celebration of the town’s culinary offerings with a pair of signature events at the center of it. Friday night’s Fire & Ice will have you tasting sweet and savory bites and specialty cocktails. The Saturday night dance party stars Motor Booty Affair. Both evenings feature an outdoor bar with fire pits.

Old Port Sea Grill is one of several dining establishments that are part of Maine Restaurant Week from March 1 – 12. Derek Davis/Staff Photographer

Maine Restaurant Week
March 1-12. Statewide locations.
This is the time of year that many foodies live for. Maine Restaurant Week features dozens upon dozens of Maine restaurants offering up special menus. It’s all about giving these spots a much-needed late-winter boost while you savor the flavor of their culinary creations. There are typically a few bonus Maine Restaurant Week events, so keep an eye on the site for updates and get your taste buds ready.

People gather inside the Bites and Brews tent at Carnaval ME on Feb. 19, 2022. Brianna Soukup/Staff Photographer

Carnaval ME
March 8-12. DiMillo’s parking lot, Commercial St., Portland, $25 to $100 (depending on event).
Portland winter carnival Carnaval Maine is moving from the Eastern Promenade into the heart of the Old Port on the DiMillo’s property. This year, the main focus is entertainment and musical acts include Maine’s Americana group The Mallett Brothers and North Carolina country-rock act Parmalee. The opening night Fire & Ice Gala happens inside the festival’s giant igloo and features live music, local craft beers, wines and some light snacks. Each day of the festival also features a Carnival Bites + Brews Experience in the igloo with local beer and food.

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