Whitefish Winter Carnival 2016

Winter Carnival weekend in Whitefish is legendary. For more than 50 years the weekend festival has drawn thousands of visitors to Northwest Montana to celebrate winter. This year’s main events are slated for Feb. 5-7. The theme is “Super Bowl Whitefish.”

• Friday, Feb. 5 is the Gala at the Whitefish Lake Restaurant.

• Penguin Plunge at City Beach is Saturday, Feb. 6 at 11 a.m. Take an icy dip in Whitefish Lake for a good cause.

• The Whitefish Winter Carnival pie social is Saturday, Feb. 6 from 12:30 – 2:30 p.m. at St. Charles Borromeo in Whitefish.

• The downtown Grand Parade is the main attraction on Saturday, Feb. 6 at 3 p.m.. Central Avenue is packed with spectators from north to south as an hour-long stream of floats, carnival royalty and winter characters make their way down Whitefish’s main drag.

• The Rotary Club of Whitefish in partnership with the Whitefish Credit Union is offering their Pancake breakfast on Sunday, Feb. 7 from 8 a.m. to noon at the Loyal Order of Moose Lodge. The breakfast is FREE to all Veterans and their immediate families. Everyone else is $8 per person. All the Veteran needs to show at the door is a valid military ID card or their DD214 Discharge paper.

HISTORY: Winter Carnival dates back to 1959, when Norm Kurtz, a tireless promoter of Whitefish, outlined the idea of a winter carnival event on a cocktail napkin during a meeting at the Northern Rocky Chalet on Big Mountain. The story of the carnival was based on a four-act pageant that Kurtz and former Whitefish Pilot owners Dick and Jackie Adams wrote to represent the four seasons and to break up the monotony of winter. Loosely likened to the Minneapolis-St. Paul Winter Fest, the Whitefish Winter Carnival has grown into one of the most notorious winter weekends in the region.