Winter Carnival to feature colorful kites, hot air balloons and family fun

LAKE GEORGE - After two weekends in which motor vehicles dominated the action, the annual Lake George Winter Carnival is taking to the skies this Saturday with airborne activities.

Carnival spectators are likely to see a colorful array of kites in the skies over the lake as members of the American Kiteflying Association fly their unusual and festive creations Saturday and offer demonstrations and maybe instructions on creating kites, carnival official Kathi Kokalas said.

Also brightening the skies will be colorful hot air balloons, conducting liftoffs and tethered rides Saturday. A Moonglow event, with balloons lit up with bursts of gas flames, is planned for 6 p.m. or so Saturday. The liftoffs are proposed for 8 a.m.

Other events not depending on the roar of vehicle engines include a series of ice-diving demonstrations both Saturday and Sunday by the Rich Moran Scuba Center.

Saturday afternoon, area eateries will put their culinary skills to the test in a barbecue cook-off.

Dozens of pigskin players will be dashing around in the snow in a Flag Football competition Saturday beginning at 10 a.m. The tournament, set for Battlefield Park, will feature quite a few teams spanning the region, Kokalas said.

Although foot- and wind-power will be dominating this coming weekend, raw horsepower of roaring engines dominated this past weekend, Kokalas said.

In addition to the throaty roar of motorcycles and ATVs careening around oval tracks in sanctioned races, one unexpected visitor surprised spectators, Ed Kokalas said.

A man showed up with a four-wheeler ATV powered by a commercial jet engine, he said.

"The vehicle sounded like a jet taking off with its whine," he said, noting the vehicle shot plumes of flame about 20 feet out the engine's rear. "And it sounded like huge explosions when the guy made it backfire."

Others had more sedate but consequential activities.

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