Winter Events You Won't Want To Miss
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When I moved to the Adirondacks a few months ago, I knew it would be great for outdoor activities, but I did not know what to expect as far as scheduled “events.” So imagine how excited I have been, with something going on every weekend -and often on weekdays -here in the Saranac Lake Region! Here are a few upcoming events that I definitely won’t miss during my first winter in the Adirondacks! Hope to see you there!

Tons of different types of gift!

Sparkle Village- Harrietstown Town Hall

  • Dec. 4th: 4pm-8pm
  • Dec. 5th: 10am-4pm

If you like craft fairs – and let’s face it, who doesn’t?? - the Sparkle Village should be at the top of your December to-do list!  As one of the largest craft shows in the North Country, it boasts more than 40 extremely talented craftsmen and vendors; and more than 1,500 people are expected to attend. Admission to the fair is only $2, with opportunities to participate in a silent auction for some fabulous prizes generously donated by our local businesses. The fair will be held on Friday, December 4 from 4 PM to 8 PM, and Saturday, December 5 from 10 AM to 4 PM. Don’t miss this fantastic craft fair, and take advantage of an opportunity to start your holiday shopping! You’ll definitely find one-of-a-kind holiday gifts for those hard-to-buy-for people in your life! 

The button for 2016!

First Night- Main Street

  • Dec. 31: 5:30pm - on

The Adirondacks are a winter wonderland, and during the holiday season they're particularly beautiful. The New Year, however, brings its own special pizzazz to Saranac Lake, with a New Year’s Eve celebration you definitely won’t want to miss!  

 This is the 10th annual First Night New Year’s Eve celebration, a family-oriented Adirondack tradition that brings revelers from towns near and far! The fun begins on December 31 at 5:30 PM, with continuous entertainment spread throughout different venues along Main Street. The celebration culminates with the famous midnight snowflake ball drop on the corner of River and Church Streets and a fireworks display over Lake Flower to welcome in 2016!  


Entertainment includes 17 different acts including live music, puppet shows, comedy improv, theater productions, and other exciting appearances - you’re sure to find some you love among the old favorites and new acts! Food and beverages are available from a variety of locations in historic downtown Saranac Lake throughout the night. This cool event continues to grow each year as families make memories that will last a lifetime.

A button is your ticket to First Night, allowing you access to all the venues and entertainment. Buttons are on sale now for a pre-event sale price of $12 per adult and $7 for teens (13-19). Children under 12 are free. Buttons purchased on, or after, December 28 will be $15 for adults. You can get your button online at or pick yours up at these local merchants: 

  • Adirondack Daily Enterprise (Saranac Lake)
  • Ampersound Music (Saranac Lake)
  • Blue Line Sports (Saranac Lake)
  • Coakley High Peaks Ace Hardware (Saranac Lake)
  • Saranac Lake Chamber of Commerce
  • Price Chopper (Lake Placid)
  • Lake Placid Visitors Bureau

On the day of the event, you can get your buttons at Ampersound Music or the First Night Headquarters in the Harrietstown Town Hall on Main Street in Saranac Lake beginning at noon.

Winter Carnival- Town wide 

  • Feb. 5th-14th 

Parades, games, concerts, celebrations, and an Ice Palace that comes with a royal court!? This sounds like the coolest winter event: The Annual Winter Carnival in Saranac Lake. Saranac Lake’s Winter Carnival is the longest running Winter Carnival in the eastern US, with roots that go back as far as 1897. It started out as a one-day event and has evolved into a 10-day extravaganza that includes sports, performances, two parades, and three sets of fireworks!

Though it has grown, the Winter Carnival is still, at its core, a warm and charming community celebration. Entirely volunteer-run, the community works all year to host the event.  

Ice Palace!

There are two centerpieces to the Saranac Lake Winter Carnival: the Ice Palace and the buttons!  

  • The Ice Palace is built on the shore of Lake Flower by volunteers, and it’s a sight you won’t want to miss. Winter Carnival begins each year at the Palace with the coronation of the King and Queen - this is when two local citizens who have contributed as volunteers to the well-being of the Saranac Lake community are recognized. The remainder of the court is made up of a Prince and Princess (elected at the two local colleges) and the Royal Lads and Lasses (elected at Saranac Lake High School). Pages are also selected at the elementary schools. It’s a unique and fun celebration!
  • One of the longest-running traditions of the festival is the Saranac Lake Winter Carnival buttons. Designed by Garry Trudeau, Saranac Lake native and creator of the Doonesbury cartoon strip, they have become collector’s items and are available at various vendors throughout the festival.

Besides the coronation, the Winter Carnival is packed withactivities, including traditional winter sports such as snowshoeing, innertube racing, Nordic and alpine ski racing and hockey games. In addition, you will want to check out the non-traditional winter sports, like Snowflake Volleyball - played in knee-deep snow, and Snowshoe Softball! Cultural activities are also part of the schedule, including theatrical performances, a chocolate festival, variety shows, and an outdoor movie night!  There’s definitely some very cool events for all ages at the Saranac Lake Winter Carnival! 

Ready to plan your Saranac Lake getaway? Check out our various lodging options and make your reservations today - cool fun awaits!

This week in related ADK news:
It’s SNOW time to hibernate - winter events are just starting to heat up.

From Santa to skiing, what's up W'face way?

Coastal Christmas celebrations

Festive from town to town to town 

10 Tupper winter highlights

Festivals, events, fun - it’s our job.

Warm up to these local traditions.

30 years of Old Tyme Christmas fun


Author:Chelsea Cook
Categories:Events, Winter
Trotting for Turkeys
A Walk To Grass Pond

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