SnowFest brings in a flurry of festivities
The third annual Winter SnowFest put on by Graeagle-Plumas Alliance is greeted with sunny weather. Crowds of people gathered at Johnsville to participate in the events and watch the festivities. Photos by Carolyn Carter
The weekend was filled with fun and festivities in Eastern Plumas County. People from all over spent Saturday and Sunday celebrating the snow and sunny weather at the third annual Winter SnowFest put on by the Graeagle-Plumas Alliance.
Saturday was filled with a multitude of events including a snowmobile porker run put on the Portola Rotary Club, the state snowshoe championships put on by the United States Snowshoe Association and a “snow carnival” put on by GPA for the kids.
Though the adult competitions where very popular, watching the joy on the kids’ faces as they zoomed down the Johnsville bunny hill on their sleds was entertaining for all. The snow carnival brought in many out-of-town visitors especially for the event.
The Hunt family, from Santa Rosa, said they came up when they heard about the festival. They said they thought it was a good way to bring their kids to the snow.
From left: 11-year-old Cody Callahan, from Clio, 15-year-old Trent Flanery, from Reno, and 3-year-old Mason Morgan with his dad Ryan, from Mountain View, stand at the starting line of the sled race for the kids’ snow carnival.
Many young ones, like 7-year-old Grace Webber, from Elk Grove, said they had only been in the snow a couple times. But, after a few turns down the sled hill with Grace giggling the whole time, it was clear no experience was necessary to have a good time.
The carnival also featured snowball throwing competitions, sled races and sled bowling, in which the kids guided their sleds into inflatable bowling pins.
On the other side of the ski lodge at the Plumas-Eureka Ski Bowl was a crowd of people watching the snowshoe racers complete their 5K and 10K races. Many sat at the lodge eating hot dogs provided by Nakoma Restaurant and drinking IPA courtesy of The Brewing Liar.
While this was going on, snowshoers and cross-country skiers were invited to participate in a leisurely tour through the Plumas-Eureka State Park. Groups of snow pedestrians met at the new groomed trail at the Jamison trailhead and traveled over to Camp Lisa, about three-quarters of a mile away.
Once they reached the camp, there was a bonfire waiting and a park ranger dressed in 1800s garb gave an interpretive presentation on the history of the park. Participants then completed their tour at the museum.
The event of the weekend was Sunday’s second round of Plumas Ski Club’s Historic Longboard Revival Series. Crowds of people surrounded the lodge at the ski hill and parked cars lined the steep Johnsville Road for a half a mile.
The atmosphere was cheery and bright, much like the weather. The crews from Nakoma and The Brewing Lair struggled to provide enough food and libations for the mass of people, which amounted to around 500 total.
The people lined the ski run cheering for the racers as they flew down the hill on their 12-foot skis. There were around 30 racers total: locals and visitors alike out to reinstate the old tradition and fight for their chance at first place.
As the event finished many people went down the mountain and perused shops and restaurants in Graeagle. The Mill Pond and parks were busy with families seizing the opportunity of the good weather to enjoy the outdoors.
According to the GPA co-chairperson, the festival was meant to bring in business for the Eastern Plumas community, as well as bring awareness to visitors everywhere that winter in Eastern Plumas County can be just as fun as summer.