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Sled dog races at Carnival

LAKEGEORGE - The concluding weekend of the 50th anniversary Lake George Winter Carnival is expected to feature favorable weather and a wide range of activities, event organizers said early this week.

With sub-freezing temperatures predicted, solid ice on the lake and plenty of snow on the ground, the conditions appear to be quite good, they said.

"We welcome everyone to come out and enjoy a whole bunch of family-oriented activities," Carnival official Kathi Kokalas said. "We've got all kinds of things going on."

Headlining the weekend is the second-annual Lake George Sled Dog Races, in which competitors from all over the Northeast and midwestern U.S. earn points towards national and international championships.

The races will be conducted both Saturday and Sunday by the New England Sled Dog Club, group member Rainer Wischinski of southern New Hampshire said Tuesday.

Wischinski said that the Club members will be bringing about 40 teams to compete, or about double the number last year. This number may be increased even more, he said, as the club has been hearing that a good number of racers from the Midwest are planning to come to Lake George. Racers from Ohio, West Virginia and elsewhere are headed to Lake George due to race cancellations in the heartland caused by warm weather, he said.

With temperatures in Lake George expected to stay below freezing this weekend, the sled dog racers are expecting to enjoy some keen competition, Wischinski said.

"We're looking forward to two full days of racing," he said. "We enjoy Lake George - the people are very friendly there."

Last year, in the local race's debut during Winter Carnival, slushy ice cancelled races on Saturday, but volunteers shoveled snow onto a course so the competition could be held Sunday.

This year, the sled dog races are likely to be held on the Warren County snowmobile trails near the Lake George transfer station off state Rte. 9N near Northway Exit 21. The races had been tentatively set to occur on the ice of Lake George, but the location was changed due to recent snowfall on the lake not being heavy enough.

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