Winter time is here, but instead of hibernating inside under a dozen blankets how about heading out and doing something fun and entertaining for the whole family?

One great idea to enjoy the winter is heading to the Saranac Lake Winter Carnival.

The winter carnival is a 10-day festival complete with parades, games, exhibits, celebrations, concerts, and more, all with a focus on family fun.

The whole event begins the first weekend in February (Feb 5-14) with the construction of a huge ice castle made from blocks of ice cut from Lake Flower, and the castle is built using techniques from over a century ago.

Every year the Carnival features a different theme, 2015's theme was 'The Groovy 60's,' and the theme for 2016 will be 'Superheroes and Villains.'

Here is a sample of this year's activities from the Adirondack.net website:

Traditional winter sports include:

  • Snowshoeing and cross-country ski racing at Dewey Mountain
  • Innertube and alpine ski races at Mount Pisgah Ski Center
  • Skating races
  • Hockey games

Non-traditional activities include:

  • The annual Gala Parade
  • Snowflake volleyball played in knee-deep snow at the Civic Center
  • Snowshoe softball played at the Elks Field
  • Ultimate frisbee games in the snow at the Saranac Lake High School Football Field
  • Fireman's broomball at the Civic Center
  • A curling exhibition on Lake Flower
  • An exhibition of woodsmen's logging skills with Paul Smith's College students at Riverside Park
  • 17th Annual Past Royalty Mixer & Dinner
  • Coronation of Carnival Royalty

Don't forget, Whiteface Mountain and beautiful Lake Placid are just a short trip from Saranac Lake, so you can do all the skiing and snowboarding you can handle in between awesome events at the Winter Carnival.