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A young boy enjoys taffy on a stick at last year's Cabane à Sucre event, hosted by the St. Paul French Association. Similar events will be taking place this Family Day weekend.
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Plenty of fun and games planned for Family Day weekend

Feb 11, 2014 10:45 am | Sam Macdonald

This year’s Family Day long weekend promises to be a busy one, with the Town of St. Paul’s Shiver Fest taking place from Feb. 15 to 17, and the French association hosting its Cabane à Sucre on the holiday Monday.

“There’ll be stuff like skating, tobogganing, and fishing that will be free,” says St. Paul Recreation Director Gary Ward, “Basically it’s a weekend event starting on Saturday, and ending on Monday the 17th.”

Saturday’s activities include free public skating from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m., at the Clancy Richard Arena, $2 public swimming from 1 to 4 p.m. On all three days, there will be tobogganing taking place at the hill at Lagassé Park.

On Sunday, there will be $2 family bowling from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Parallel Lanes, free outdoor skating on main street by the St. Paul Foundry, and $2 public swimming at the Aquatic Centre in the afternoon.

Holiday Monday features the most activities of the weekend. The day will kick off with a Toonie Pancake Breakfast with Town of St. Paul Mayor Glenn Andersen from 9 to 11 a.m. at Reunion Station, free sleigh rides running from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., a concession running from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Reunion Station, and free ice fishing from noon until 3 p.m. at the town’s pond.

“We built a toboggan hill by Reunion Station for the kids, and there’ll be various races going on. We’ll have two fires going all day to keep people warm, one main fire pit by Reunion Station, and another at the Gazebo at the fish pond,” says Ward.

Other activities at Shiver Fest on Monday include a teepee set up with bannock running from 12 to 4 p.m., a clown performance from 1 to 4 p.m., music by DJ 45 Special, tobogganing, 2x4 ski races, sack races, bonfires, snow paint, a snowman making contest, a marshmallow roast, and a tic-tac-toe snow game. Events will take place near the soccer fields.

There will also be $2 public swimming at the Aquatic Centre again from 1 to 4 p.m. and free public skating by The Foundry going on all day.

Ward explains that Shiver Fest is being held in conjunction with Cabane à Sucre, an event the AFCA is hosting on Family Day.

“We’re offering free rides between (the Cultural Centre) and Reunion station, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.. The Action Bus is running back and forth, and that way it’ll make things easier for people instead of making them drive themselves,” says Ward.

Planning for the event is coming along well, and should offer activities and attractions that will cater to everyone’s interests, says Ward.

“It was a bit chilly (last year), but even the sleigh rides went until two o’clock last year, and were used by both kids and adults. It’s a great time together to enjoy the friendship and company.”

Cabane à Sucre

On Feb. 17, the St. Paul French association (ACFA) has a number of activities, and games of their own planned. Cabane à Sucre will take place just outside the Centre Communitaire (Cultural Centre), and will feature traditional French-Canadian activities.

“We usually have our own thing yearly, and it’s something we’ve been having for years. This year, we’re doing it in conjunction with other Family Day events,” says Chantal Briere, a program director with ACFA.

“This year we’re coming together (with the town) and working as one, instead of having the events back-to-back.”

Cabane à Sucre goes from 1 to 4 p.m., and starts with a dance performance from Les Blés d'Or dance group. After the performance, there will be traditional outdoor French games.

Games include a pillow fight where two competitors sit on a log and swing at one another with pillows until someone falls off. Other activities include team log sawing, cross country 2x4 team skiing, and a white-on-white treasure hunt in the snow. There will also be a bonfire and hot beverages available.

Cabane à Sucre will be free of charge, says Briere.

“It’ll be a lot of fun. A lot of people come out every year. We hope to have as many people as usual this year.”


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September 2014