From cross country skiing down a remote candle-lit trail in Mille Lacs Kathio State Park to riding through the woods on snowmobile with none other than the Minnesota Vikings, the Lake Mille Lacs area will be abuzz with family friendly outdoor activities Feb. 6-8.
Arctic Blast, a snowmobile rally sponsored by the Minnesota Vikings is held near Lake Mille Lacs annually, with the city of Wahkon on the lake’s southern shore hosting this year’s event. Check out millelacs.com for full event information, and be sure to note the Arctic Blast parade with the Vikings on Feb. 7, along with ice sculptures, sleigh rides, ice-skating and fireworks over Wahkon Bay.
The main event, snowmobiling with current and past Vikings players, will be Feb. 8 with stops at Castaways Resort, Nitti’s Hunter’s Point and Buzzies on the Bay in Isle. Shuttle service will also be available for those who don’t have a snowmobile, but would like to spend time with Vikings players. Proceeds from Arctic Blast will benefit the Vikings Children’s Fund.
If you’re looking for a quieter getaway on Feb. 8, head to Mille Lacs Kathio State Park near Onamia for a serene candlelit cross country ski adventure at dusk. Luminaries will guide the way on two separate trail routes, a 1-mile loop and 2.5-mile trail between the park’s trail center and interpretive center. A shuttle bus will run continuously between the two locations. Snowshoers are also welcome, with a short .5-mile trail groomed for stomping.
The event, co-sponsored by the Minnesota State Parks and Trails and the Natural Resource Club of Central Lakes College, will be from 6-9:30 p.m. Ski rental will be available on a first-come, first-served basis and snowshoes will be also be available free of charge. Refreshments will be served and music will be provided by Hans Blix and the Weapons Inspectors from 7-9 p.m.
While there is no charge for the Candlelight Ski event, a vehicle permit is required to enter the State Park ($5 for a one-day permit) and skiers 16 years old or older will need a Minnesota Ski Pass ($6 for a one-day pass), all available at the park office. For trail condition updates, call Mille Lacs Kathio State Park at 320-532-3523.
For more information on candlelight skiing, Arctic Blast or any other upcoming events or vacation ideas, visit millelacs.com.