Fun Friday for a Long Weekend! Welcome to Our World

A friend of mine who lives in the Carolinas sent me a message the other day, lamenting the snow that was, oddly enough, piling up around her yard and driveway. “Now I know how you feel up there in Alaska,” she said. “I can’t go anywhere. How do you manage?”

Now, AKontheGO’ers, we know very well if we didn’t get out and about in the winter, no one would do anything and life would stop. But, understanding this is a new experience for my gal pal, I simply said “We do it anyway.” Which blew her mind, especially when I told her temperatures at AK Hacienda rose no further than five degrees F yesterday.

Lots going on this weekend; Monday is a holiday for many, the sun continues to show her glorious face, and, as a special bonus, light spreads across the landscape before 10:00 a.m. Yes, life is good. The AKontheGO mailbox was full of fun stuff this week, so let’s take advantage of our bounty and get out of the house, shall we? Special thanks to the Alaska Center for Pediatrics for sponsoring another Fun Friday, we couldn’t do it without your support and encouragement.

FRIDAY: Town Square park in downtown Anchorage has been transformed for the Friday Night Skate from 5-9 p.m. Glide around the nifty little rink under golden lights this evening, perhaps stopping at Kaladi Brother’s coffee for a hot chocolate and snack before or after. FREE. Park in any of the nearby garages and walk over. Check out Play it Again Sports in Spenard or South Anchorage for skates at great prices. You’ll need them, because on….

SATURDAY: The Anchorage Muni Parks and Rec folks are keeping the Westchester Family Skate days going strong! From 1-3 p.m. at Westchester Lagoon, the family can skate to music, with warming barrels, costumes, and hot cocoa. With our clear skies, certainly you’ll have incredible views. The skating area is open all the time, fyi. FREE.

Eagle River Nature Center is offering an opportunity for kids K-6 to learn about “Life Under the Snow” at their Junior Naturalist program at 2 p.m. on Saturday. Check out who, and what, depends upon the snow for survival. Dress for the weather, but if temps are too low, class will move indoors. FREE, $5 parking for nonmembers.

Speaking of science, if your kids are into stars and planets and such, stop by the Planetarium at the Anchorage Museum on Saturday or Sunday to witness 23 minutes of interstellar amazement. “Wonders of the Universe” shows at Noon on Saturday (and 5:30 p.m. this Thursday, too); and “New Horizons” shows at 2 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday. Admission is $15/adult, $10 kids, but includes Museum entry fee. Visit the Anchorage Museum website for all the info, especially because on…

SUNDAY: The Museum is offering their popular Warhol Factory Family Open Studio from 1-4 p.m. Kids of all ages are welcome to create using a host of media with the help of artist Kyra Rice. FREE with Museum admission.

Want to see some fast-paced, skiing fun? Hit the Beach Lake trails in  at 17300 Birchwood Loop on Sunday morning and see the Chugiak Skijor races, beginning  at 9:30. There’s something about dogs and skiing that appeal to folks, and it is fun to see the teamwork between skier and pooch. FREE for spectators, $20 if you’d like to harness up your dog and participate. Contact the Skijoring club for info, 349-WOOF. Ha.

Cook Inlet Archers are hosting the 23rd Annual Snowshoe Shoot on Sunday at 10:30 a.m. Traipse the woods in search of 23 3-D targets set up to replicate actual hunting conditions. Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, hear this! Great practice for that Archery badge at camp this summer, eh? Kids 12 and under are FREE. Cool. Meet at Carol Moenich Archery Park, 19205 Kerbow Lane in Chugiak. Call 354-8589 for info, or visit the club’s website HERE.

A side note: I had the chance to hang out with John and Ginna Baldiviez, owners of the House of Bread on old Seward Highway, this week. Besides the wonderful coffee and bread and sandwiches and cinnamon rolls, I sensed immediately the family-friendly nature of this place. While only open for 5 weeks, House of Bread is attracting quite the following and I heartily endorses this wonderful haven for parents, so stop by and tell them AKontheGO sent you. Yum.

Have a wonderful and warm weekend, wherever you might be. See you Monday! AK Fam is headed out hiking, cold or no cold. We’ll let you know how it goes.

Posted in Alaskan Winter Fun, Downtown Anchorage, Miscellaneous.