If your family is experiencing cabin fever, a Wisconsin festival next weekend can provide the perfect getaway.

Christmas Mountain Village in the Wisconsin Dells will host its annual Winter Carnival on Saturday. The all-day event includes a variety of activities, from skiing and tubing to a torchlight parade.

The free festival, held on the ski slopes of Christmas Mountain, will feature the return of favorites, including wood splitting, ski races and fireworks after the nighttime parade.

“Tradition is why people love the winter carnival, so there is always a new game or two, but for the most part it’s what festivalgoers have come to know and love,” said Karla Davis, resort manager for Bluegreen Vacations Corp., which manages the resort.

Perhaps the biggest draw to the festival is the box car derby, Davis said.

“Festivalgoers really get into making fun box cars and they are raced down the tubing hill,” she said.

Another big draw is an event where participants ski across frigid water.

“We put a large pool at the end of a ski run and skiers take their chance to ski across it,” Davis said. “For those that do not make it across, they plunge into icy cold water.”

Dog pulls, live music, face-painting and marshmallow-roasting further provide something for everyone.

Although the Winter Carnival is only one day, there is plenty to do in town — making this a good long-weekend destination.

At Knuckleheads Bowling and Indoor Amusement Park in Wisconsin Dells, families can enjoy an arcade, bowling and rides in the 80,000-square-foot indoor facility.

Indoor water parks offer tube slides, lazy rivers, wave pools and other water attractions, while a variety of spas offer treatments that include massage therapy, hot springs and meditation.

There’s also nearly a dozen wineries and distilleries in the area, while nearby hiking trails allow visitors to smell the fresh wintry pine air.

To participate in the Winter Carnival’s events, visitors can sign up for the games and other events on the day of the event. Most sign-ups are held at Mulligan’s at Christmas Mountain Village.

For more information, go to dells.com.


Features Editor