SATURDAY: DEEP to Host 13th Annual No Child Left Inside® Winter FestivalGrab your winter gear, bundle up your children and join us for the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection’s (DEEP) No Child Left Inside® 13th annual Winter Festival at Burr Pond State Park, 384 Burr Mountain Road, Torrington. A full range of fun, outdoor winter activities for the entire family will be happening on Saturday, February 2, 2019, 10 am to 3 pm. This event is a partnership between No Child Left Inside®, Connecticut Aquatic Resources Education (CARE) and the City of Torrington.
“Join us outdoors with family and friends for an unforgettable winter experience at Burr Pond State Park. You can try your hand at ice fishing and hopefully reel in a fish, learn how to snowshoe and play winter games at DEEP’s annual Winter Festival. Year after year families look forward to this festival where they can spend the day outdoors, bonding with each other, meeting new friends, and participating in good old-fashioned outdoor fun,” said DEEP Commissioner-designee Katie Dykes. “Winter time is a great time to get out and enjoy Connecticut’s state parks, which are an important driver of tourism and investment in the local economy. Now thanks to Passport to Parks, those with Connecticut registered vehicles can enter this and other state parks free of charge. Passport to Parks is easy and convenient for visitors, and provides a sustainable funding source for park maintenance, programming and public safety.”
The Festival is free and there is no registration required, everyone is welcome to attend. Last year a record crowd of nearly 1,200 people came out for what has been a highlight of the Connecticut winter season. Activities planned for the day include: ice fishing, a fish fry, snowshoeing, ice sculpting, snow play, identifying wildlife tracks, winter hikes, ice safety rescue demonstrations by the Torrington Fire Department, demonstrations by LL BEAN, REI, Reach Your Summit, along with visits from Resources in Search and Rescue and the CT Valley Siberian Husky Club, winter games sponsored by the Torrington Park and Recreation Department, and a marshmallow roast, bonfire and story time. Boy Scout Troop 1 will also be selling food at the event (cash only).
Ice fishing equipment and instruction will be provided by DEEP’s Connecticut Aquatic Resources Education (CARE) instructors. Dress for the cold weather and bring your ice spikes.
As a general reminder, DEEP reminds those wishing to venture onto the ice, that SAFETY COMES FIRST. Be aware that ice thickness varies on all water bodies due to a number of environmental factors including in-lake water circulatory patterns, snow cover and the type and amounts of recent precipitation. Please check the ice carefully before venturing out and check repeatedly to make sure the ice thickness is sufficient. Please visit DEEP’s Ice safety page: www.ct.gov/deep/icesafety
Keeping Warm Outdoors During the Winter
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) www.healthychildren.org has some valuable tips on how to keep your children safe and warm on a cold winter day.
- Dress infants and children warmly for outdoor activities. Several thin layers will keep them dry and warm. Don’t forget warm boots, gloves or mittens (to keep hands warmer), and a hat. Layering is a good idea; so are moisture-wicking fabrics and clothing that’s geared to the sport.
- The rule of thumb for older babies and young children is to dress them in one more layer of clothing than an adult would wear in the same conditions.
- Set reasonable time limits on outdoor play to prevent hypothermia and frostbite. Have children come inside periodically to warm up.
- The sun’s rays can still cause sunburn in the winter, especially when they reflect off snow. Make sure to cover your child’s exposed skin with sunscreen.
Visit No Child Left Inside® at www.NoChildLeftInside.org to learn more and visit Burr Pond State Park at www.ct.gov/deep/BurrPond for directions.
The Connecticut State Park system was founded in 1913 with the creation of the State Park Commission. One year later the Commission purchased its first land, about four acres in Wesport for what became Sherwood Island State Park. Today, Connecticut has 110 state parks and 32 state forests attracting more than 9 million visitors each year, generating over $1 billion in revenue for the state and supporting 9,000 private sector jobs. Those driving Connecticut registered motor vehicles are provided free entrance to the parks thanks to the Passport to Parks program. For more info on Connecticut State Parks visit: www.ct.gov/deep/stateparks