Snowfest-something for everyone
Tue, 01/22/2019 - 6:20pm admin
—Snow is not a prerequisite for having fun, but it’s nice!
Kay Ihns ~ TPD Staff
Howard County - The best event of this frosty season is coming this weekend, the Driftrunners Snowmobile Club’s Snowfest. Jan. 24-27 is the 48th annual Snowfest in Howard County.
The event allows club members and the average visitor to partake in the joys of the great outdoors.
Vice-President Lee Pecinovsky noted the festivities will take place even when there is no snow “We still will go about our expo.”
President Brandon Plaht “Not having snow on the ground may turn some people away, but there are many other types of non-snowmobile events.”
Snowfest will happen no matter the weather — from a blistery blowing snow to a calm peaceful sunshine.
It is lots of fun with snow, but there are still options to have fun if mother nature doesn’t cooperate. Riders can use side-by-sides and automobiles to travel from town to town. During snowy conditions, some favorite rides include riding vintage sleds and a ladies ride.
Some of the Driftrunners’ biggest fund-raisers during the weekend are the raffle and the silent auction. Tickets are being sold at the Expo on Saturday, with the drawing at 10:30 p.m. Some of the bigger prizes include:
~ Traeger Elite Smoker/ Grill, which comes compliments of Fisk Farm and Home of Cresco and Driftrunners;
~ Meat package, compliments of Fareway Meats and Grocery of Cresco;
~ Two-night cabin rental from Harvest Farms;
~ Big screen TV from Driftrunners; and
~ Stihl Chainsaw comes compliments of Cresco Small Engine Repair and Driftrunners
In addition, there will be many more prizes. Tickets are by donation of six for $5.00 or $1.00 each.
Plaht explained, “There are two big screen TVs and many other items, like a few Amazon Echo electronic products.” There are also many larger household items.
The silent auction has many different gift packages mostly from local businesses.
This year, Little Turkey has been added to the stops along the trails. The rest of the stops include Cresco, Lime Springs, Protivin, Lourdes, Saratoga, Florenceville, Granger, Chester, Kendallville, Ridgeway, Burr Oak, Bluffton and Jerico. In these towns most of the stops are at restaurants, gas stations and bars. This really showcases the local businesses and community.
The 50/50 Fun Run For Spina Bifida takes place all weekend. Participants get their cards stamped or signed at each stop, and on Sunday, the cards are turned in at the Fireman’s Inn at Ridgeway.
• Taking place on Thursday are the Vokaty Special Early Bird Ride and an exciting Evening Club Trail Ride.
• Friday has the Ladies Trail Ride and the Evening Club Ride.
• Saturday is a vast day of events.
The tasty Boy Scout Breakfast is at the Expo Center, starting at 6:30 a.m.
The ISSA Club Iowa Ride will start at 10 a.m., and Bingo is sponsored by the American Legion 135 from noon-4 p.m.
Weather permitting, at noon, the HoCA Cancer Awareness Family Ride starts at noon, or riders can join the Vintage Sled Ride to Lime Springs. The Torchlight Parade will take place at Vernon Springs. At 7 p.m. is the popular bonfire at the Vernon Springs Mill Pond.
There will be food and drinks before and during the Snowball Dance, which features music from the Lonesome Road Band.
• On Sunday, the fest will finish with Brunch and 50/50 Fun Run Card turn-in. Last but not least is the Afternoon Family Trail Ride.
There are 14 board members who meet each week durning the snow season, every other week during harvest time and just once a month during non-snow times of the year. These meetings are open to all the members and the general public.
There are over 100 members to the club, which makes it the State of Iowa’s largest number in membership.
The length of the trails are 250-300 miles and a lot of the local members of Howard County work to keep them ready for the event. All the trails are marked and ready for the snow. When the snow flies, then the bridges go up.
Looking to 50th anniversary
Pecinovsky said the club is looking ahead for the 50th snowfest, which will be in two years. They are thinking about a main street parade.
Plaht hopes in the future to work more closely with the city of Cresco in regards to the 50th snowfest, “More non-snowmobile events may include a vintage sled show.”
Pecinovsky added, “We are open to new ideas and how to get more people into the Expo.”
Past visitors have come from great distances to attend the annual event that includes all of Howard County. Many are from southeastern Iowa and even from the state of Missouri.
Plaht noted, “We are promoting activities in that area to get the word around.”
Participants of Snowfest come because in their own area they have no snow, and attending the celebration in Howard County has become a tradition . . . snow or no snow.
This years Snowfest has the makings of a great time, and a wonderful event for all.