Muskoka To-DAILY

Gravenhurst Winter Carnival to wrap up 8 days of fun with awards, fireworks Sunday night

Mark Clairmont | MuskokaTODAILY.com

GRAVENHURST — Bill Johnson checked off another item on his retirement bucket list by being the first one into the polar dip.

Bill Johnson, 67, was the first Parlar Dip participant.

Bill Johnson, 67, was the first Parlar Dip participant.

And Jeremy Rand defended his chicken wing-eating title Saturday on the second-last day of the Gravenhurst Winter Carnival.

They were just two of hundreds of hail and hearty enthusiasts who enjoyed the indoor and outdoor events as young and old, local and tourist joined in the fun.

Johnson, who retired from the district water works department two years ago in Bala, wanted to make a splash last year, but rain cancelled the popular event at Gull Lake Rotary Park.

Jersey Zinkie drives her last spke in the Rotary nail-driving contest.

Jersey Zinkie drives her last spke in the Rotary nail-driving contest.

So, the 67-year-old was back again this year to make sure he took the plunge with about 10 others mid-afternoon.

And Rand, a planner with the Town of Gravenhurst, left the least meat on a pound-and-a-half of wings at Carey’s Pub at about the same time as Johnson was ticking off one of his retirement bucket list items.

Rand was egged one by his own cheering section from the Severn Rowing Club, where he’s an award-winning member of the competitive club.

After three minutes of inhaling a dozen wings, they weighed his bones and he had cleaned the most meat off them.

It was just part of the frivolity of the carnival and a fun way to get out of the house and enjoy a few laughs.

Kimberley Bell, 18, and Kiea Parliament, 14, were among the dozens of Gravenhurst Winter Carnival volunteers.

Kimberley Bell, 18, and Kiea Parliament, 14, were among the dozens of Gravenhurst Winter Carnival volunteers.

All over town the past week similar mid-winter break events have been pulling in big and small crowds — from last Sunday’s demolition derby, which included kiddy-cars and kicked off the nine-day carnival, to arm-wrestling at BP, to entertainment, speeches, movies and Lions pancakes at the Opera House.

Outside the OP Saturday beds raced around the downtown streets, Rotarians were pounded with young nail drivers and Brandy Stevenson was “sawed in half” at the end of the Home Building Centre’s sawing contest.

A Beaver Fever dance at the arena Saturday night gave the adults a chance shake off the winter blues.

Sunday’s final day wraps up with a legion pancake breakfast, Skokie’s Birthday Party at the Y and awards and closing ceremony and fireworks at Boston Pizza.

Home Building Centre's Brandy Stevenson gets help from fellow workers in the sawing contest. Left, Ben Steels, Jenn Beaty, Monica McConnnan, Gerry Severin and Travis Shelton.

Home Building Centre’s Brandy Stevenson gets help from fellow workers in the sawing contest. Left, Ben Steels, Jenn Beaty, Monica McConnnan, Gerry Severin and Travis Shelton.

It’s been a great week with weather you could bare, dogs you could dash, movies and face-painting the kids always enjoy, choirs, chili, donuts, puddle-jumping snowmobiles, hot jazz, skating, sledge hockey and ice hockey games, a Heritage Hike, board games, pizza, beer, a lip-synching contest, children’s activities, darts, trivia — and ton of great sponsor.

Something you won’t want to miss in 2018.

A great effort by all the participants, head oranizer Rob Abbot and the town combined.

See 15 pictures in photo gallery below for more fun, click on photos to enlarge.

Short URL: http://www.muskokatodaily.com/?p=26810

Posted by on Feb 25 2017. Filed under Headlines. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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