submitted by Elena Shoemaker, GLSP
The morning snowfall came just in time. Saturday’s snow created the perfect backdrop to another successful Winter Fest. For 27 years, Grafton Lakes State Park’s Winter Festival has been the highlight of the usually dormant winter season by offering outdoor enjoyment and free entertainment for the whole family.
[private]This year many favorite vendors and exhibitors returned, and a few new faces were also welcomed. Newcomers Out of the Pits, a not for profit group who rescues pit bull terriers while providing outreach and education, were a big hit with their Kiss-a-Bull kissing booth. L.L. Bean successfully lead hourly hikes on some of the Park’s many trails. Old favorites such as the Touch n’ Explore Wildlife education table, face painting and the popular horse drawn sleigh rides provided by Indian Creek Farm were also present this year. Meanwhile, the Park’s new Concessionaire Brunswick Barbeque & Brew joined forces with Our Lady of the Snow and the Ladies Auxiliary to provide refreshments to patrons and exhibitors alike. All in all, the Park saw approximately 1,250 visitors this year.
A popular draw of Winter Fest is our annual ice fishing contest. This year was no different; 37 children and 144 adults participated. The grand cash prize of $500 went to Brendon Doyle for his 23¾ inch pickerel catch. The top prizes were:
Grand Prize – Brendon Doyle – 23¾ inch pickerel
Adult’s Top Prizes
Perch – Jeff Brock (13”)
Pickerel – Jeff Waytkus (23½”)
Trout – Randall French (21½”)
Children’s Top Prizes
Perch – Tyler Lindsey (14”)
Pickerel – Jarod Paginello (21½”)
As always, the Park would like to thank the sponsors, without whom this event would not be possible: Averill Park Septic, Brunswick Barbeque and Brew, Eastern Mountain Sports, Graftonondack Outfitters and Boat Livery, Grimm Building Co., Insurance Agency Group of New York, John Ray & Sons, L.L.Bean, Main Care Oil, Marra’s Pharmacy, Poestenkill Auto Supply Inc., Rifenburg Construction, Seymour’s Motor Sports, Stewart’s, Stone Industries, Taconic Plastics, Tremont Hardware, Unifirst Uniforms, Warren Fane Inc., AKF Equipment, Atlantis Equipment, Beecroft’s, Conroy’s Bait Supply, Edlemann’s Sales, Flying Arrow Sports, Grafton Hills Bottled Water, Grafton Trail Blazers, Guptill’s, Henry Hudson Planetarium, Honest Weight Food Co-op, Hoosick True Value, Hudson River Tractor, Lakeview Inn, Marpe’s Pizzeria & Country Store, Mohawk Army & Navy, Mohawk Hudson Cycling Club, Price Chopper – Brunswick, Village Discount Wines & Liquors, Wiley Brothers and Young’s Pharmacy.