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Winter Carnival offers new bonfire, dog-sled rides, and kite expo

This year also features a bonfire at dusk Sat. Feb. 14 for both marshmallow-roasting and socializing while fireworks light up the sky. The day also features an offbeat Mardi Gras Parade down Canada St. A petting zoo on some Saturdays will allow children to encounter various creatures.

For those interested in winter hikes, the Corinth Snowshoeing Club will be offering demonstrations.

Also new this year is a hot-air balloon launching set for Sat. Feb. 2,, weather permitting, along with tethered balloon rides and a night "Moonglow" display with the colorful giant orb lit up against the black sky.

Folks of all ages are likely to marvel at - or frolic in - an ice castle sculpted by famed ice sculptor Earl Covington.

And what would Winter Carnival be without its trademark Polar Plunge, featuring dozens of brave swimmers dashing into the frigid lake - a favorite spectator event set for 3 p.m. each weekend day, Kokolas said.

"Their bravery always amazes me," she said.

Monday, Kokolas predicted that attendance at this year's Carnival is likely to be robust, regardless of the economy.

"Reservations through town look good despite the recession," she said. "Families are looking for an affordable getaway, and most all our activities are offered at no charge."

Kokolas said she expects a lot of weekend visitors from the Capital District and other metropolitan areas within a few hours' drive.

"The Winter Carnival makes for a great family weekend, close by," she said.

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