February 6, 2016 5:29 pm
Updated: February 6, 2016 10:14 pm

Warm temperatures move Westmount’s winter carnival indoors

WATCH ABOVE: For the past 33 years, the City of Westmount has celebrated the winter season by hosting an outdoor winter carnival. But this year's unseasonably warm temperatures have put a damper on things. Felicia Parrillo reports.


WESTMOUNT – Andrew Maislin has been working in Westmount’s sports and recreation department for about 10 years.

Andrew Maislin at the Westmount Recreation Centre on February 6, 2016.

Sebastien Gagnon-Dorval/Global News

Which means every year, he participates in the city’s annual winter carnival, but this year, things are set up a little different.

“Because of the weather, the plus temperatures, the minus temperatures, the areas that we were planning to use – the park – is not good enough for us to use this year,” he said. “So we’ve had to pull an audible and bring ourselves inside.”

That means outdoor activities like winter classic hockey games, skating competitions and snowman building contests, were all moved indoors.

Hockey rink in the Westmount Recreation Centre on February 6, 2016.

Felicia Parrillo/Global News

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“We’ve basically had to move everything indoors, and you lose a little bit of that winter feel to it,” Maislin said. “But we’re gonna make the best of everything, that’s the way we do things around here.”

READ MORE: Quebec City Carnival closed due to rain, warm weather

The City of Westmount was supposed to hold all its winter activities at King George Park – including the toboggan run, which was outright cancelled because of the lack of snow.

“The only thing, luckily, we had to cancel was our tobogganing, obviously, because of our toboggan hill – we can’t make one in here,” Maislin said. “But everything else, our horse-drawn carriage, our maple coffee, our bonfire, our hockey games, are running as normal.”

But for Patrizia Zanelli and her kids, the scene at the Westmount Recreation Centre isn’t normal at all.

Patrizia Zanelli and her kids at the Westmount Recreation Centre on February 6, 2016.

Felicia Parrillo/Global News

She’s been attending the city’s winter carnivals for 16 years and would rather it be outside.

“The preference is to do it outside,” she said. “That’s the fun part of it – getting cold, freezing your toes off – getting sticky toffee on your clothes and in their hair.”

For others, regardless of where the carnival takes places, they’re just happy to be a part of it.

“For my daughter, it’s a nice opportunity to play with her friends,” a Westmount resident said. “It’s nice for the city to come up with the good idea and I think everything is fine, we have a lot of fun.”

For the most part, residents looked on the bright side of things but are hoping for better luck next year.


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