Fun Friday Festivities, All the Way from Washington!

AK Kid checks out a salmon at the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery in his REI raingear.

I’m shaking off my Marmot Precip raincoat this morning, courtesy of our friends at REI. I’m thankful for it, since our days in the greater Seattle area have been drippy, droppy, and downright pour-y. Snow spattered our windshield on the way home from the wonderful Museum of Flight, and AK Kid has been happy to wear his mittens and Bogs, thoughtfully packed by AK Dad.

From the photos you AKontheGO’ers have been posting on Facebook, it looks as if Alaska is still in late-winter glory, with sunny days and cold nights, perfect for an Iditarod weekend. So how about we get this party started? Brought to you by Alaska Center for Pediatrics, caring for kids since 1983.

FRIDAY: This is the final weekend of ZooLights at the Alaska Zoo, so hop on over to their beautiful displays from 5-8 p.m. today and tomorrow. Cost is $6, $5 for members.

The Anchorage Museum’s newest exhibit, “Mammoths and Mastadons: Titans of the Ice Age” opens today and promises to be a look back in time for all ages. See the Lutya, the baby Mammoth, gaze into the lifestyle of these great beasts, and see how Man figured into the plan. The Museum is open 10 a.m.-6 p.m. daily, and the exhibit runs through October 9, 2011. Visit the Museum website for pricing and details.

Fur Rondy is hosting a Family Skate today at 4 p.m. down by Westchester Lagoon, so lace up the skates and take the kids. Burn barrels, music, and sunshine will dominate the landscape. Bring your own skating gear.

Take a hike with your favorite kid at Eagle River Nature Center today

Eagle River Nature Center is hosting a Spring Break Hike this morning at 11 a.m. for the lucky 12 kids who sign up by calling 694-2108. Part of the Junior Naturalist program, this hike will take kids down to the Classroom Yurt for lunch and look for animal tracks during the 1-2 miles of walking. Dress for weather and bring an adult. Free, but $5 parking for non members.

SATURDAY: Here it is, Iditarod Start Day! If you want to see the crazy preparations for the Last Great Race, head on down to 4th Avenue early, early (like around 8 a.m.), and watch mushers arrive, set up their areas, and string harness, pack gear, and meet up with old friends. It’s worth it. Don’t forget, either, to stop by the Campbell Creek Science Center off Elmore road for some snacks, prime viewing of teams, and interesting information about the Historic Iditarod Trail.

Kids and parents wait for the next musher at Campbell Creek Science Center during Iditarod 2010

If it’s chilly for the family, stop by the Anchorage Museum at 1 p.m. for Iditarod Family Day, where activities abound for kids related to dog mushing and a way of life so important to our Native Alaskan cohorts. Free with Museum admission.

Fur Rendezvous is still in full swing, so don’t miss the Vintage Snowmachine Parade down 4th Avenue at 2 p.m., and the Running of the Reindeer at 4 p.m., also on 4th. Yes, this ought to wind the day up nicely.

SUNDAY: If not attending the ReStart in Willow, take the day to watch the awesome efforts of Tour of Anchorage participants. This 50, 40, and 25k ski event brings out all sorts of Nordic skiing enthusiasts, and it’s tons of fun to watch skiers emerge from the trees at various viewing spots around town. Check the Nordic Ski Association of Anchorage website for specific start times and best viewing areas for each event. Pack a lunch and spend the day in the sunshine.

Speaking of sunshine, I’m thinking I need to find some. AK Kid and I are off for our morning jog around the neighborhood. Enjoy the weekend and Happy Spring Break!

Posted in Alaskan Winter Fun, Festivals and Events, Miscellaneous and tagged , , , .