A weekend of winter fun is in store at Apple Valley’s Mid-Winter Fest Feb. 2-3.
Now in its 36th year, the annual celebration hosted by the city’s Parks and Recreation Department features family-oriented activities throughout the weekend at the Apple Valley Community Center, Valleywood Golf Course and other sites throughout the city.
New events this year include a treasure hunt for youths at the Apple Valley Teen Center and a concert at the community center by the Southview Singers, a 50-student choir from Apple Valley’s Southview Elementary.
The medallion hunt, a perennial festival favorite, returns this year for teams of sleuths to search out a medallion hidden in one of the city’s 50 parks. Clues will be posted at the Apple Valley Community Center throughout the weekend Feb. 2 and 3, and the finder of the medallion wins $250. Last year’s medallion was discovered in the playground area at Quarry Point Park by Corey Bixby of Farmington.
An ice-fishing demonstration hosted by the Minnesota Valley In-Fisherman Club was a popular draw at last year’s festival; it returns this year to Lac Lavon Lake, with equipment provided for guests to give the winter sport a try.
The community center will take on a family carnival atmosphere Saturday with face painting, inflatable jumpers, balloon animals and mini golf. Other activities at the community center that day include a reptile show, ice carving, bingo, youth pie-eating contest, and a community bonfire and marshmallow roast.
Valleywood Golf Course hosts a Mid-Winter Fest event on Saturday evening with a 6 p.m. concert by singer-songwriter Michael Monroe, whose performance is part of the Frozen Apple concert series sponsored by the Apple Valley Arts Foundation.
The Apple Valley Teen Center is playing host to an array of youth-oriented activities. On Friday, Feb. 1, the venue will hold a dance party for teens with disabilities; the treasure hunt and middle school “DJ dance party” are planned Feb. 2 and a Super Bowl party Feb. 3.
A Mid-Winter Fest button is required for all events. This year’s button, which was designed by Apple Valley High School 11th-grader Michael Richardson, is $2 in advance of the festival and is available at the Apple Valley Community Center, Valleywood Golf Course, City Hall, teen center, city sports arenas and all municipal liquor stores. Buttons are $3 at the door.
The local Lions Club is hosting a spaghetti dinner in conjunction with the festival Thursday, Jan. 31, at the Apple Valley American Legion, 14521 Granada Drive.
A full Mid-Winter Fest schedule, along with registration forms for snow softball and the other sports tournaments, is at www.cityofapplevalley.org.