Pittsfield Winter Carnival 2000

This is an annual event in Pittsfield MA to provide winter activities, mostly outdoors and mostly free of charge, for people of all ages. The Pittsfield Winter Carnival is in its 55th year (2000). The Pittsfield Winter Carnival is planned and executed by the Pittsfield Winter Sports Committee, a totally volunteer non-profit organization, under the auspices of the City of Pittsfield, Department of Community Services, Parks and Recreation.

The following is a synopsis and schedule of the events that make up this year's Pittsfield Winter Carnival. We will endeavor to maintain this schedule, but extreme weather conditions may cause change or cancellation.

A Button Design Contest is held to award prizes to Pittsfield school children in a contest, broken down into age groups, to design that year's button. The overall winning design is made into a 2" button that will be sold by the Queen Contestants as part of the Queen Contest. The sale of these buttons raises moneys to support the activities of the Carnival. The design contest was held from September 27th - October 27th, 1999.

A Home Snow Sculpture Contest will be introduced for the 2000 Carnival. A family or group of individuals may construct a snow sculpture. When the sculpture is completed the Parks Department is notified and a judge will inspect and photograph the sculpture. The winners will be judged by the committee based on the photographs taken. Winners will be chosen and announced at Family Day. The Home Snow Sculpture contest is from January 8-22nd. Entry is free of charge.

The Pittsfield Winter Carnival Queen Contest is open to girls 17-21 years of age who live, attend school or work in Pittsfield or an adjoining town. This contest culminates with the Queen's Coronation Ball where the winning contestant and the lady in waiting are crowned. Scholarships are awarded to the new Queen and Lady-in-waiting. In addition the contestants choose Miss Congeniality and a special scholarship award is given to the top button seller. During the 4-week Queen contest, the contestants sell buttons (see button design contest above) to raise money (buttons sell 2 for a dollar) to support the Winter Carnival events. Each contestant must sell a minimum of 1000 buttons to qualify to be judged for Queen. A maximum of 16 girls may enter. Application forms to enter the contest are available starting Dec. ?? at the Pittsfield High Schools, Berkshire Community College and at the Parks Department offices at Springside House, 874 North Street. The first 16 qualified applications submitted are accepted for the contest. Again this year we expect to have 16 Queen contestants! The Queen contest runs from Sunday January 16th through Sunday February 13th. Entry is free of charge.

Family Day is the premier outdoor family event of the Winter Carnival! Held at the Controy Pavilion on the shore of Onota Lake. This is your chance to meet all the Queen contestants and purchase as many buttons as you wish! Activities include Sled, Skating and Snowshoe races, Horseshoes on ice, Kite Flying, Snow Sculpturing, Ice-Fishing and Golf-on-Ice competitions. Again this year's Family Day includes tethered Hot Air Balloon rides for the kids (50-100 foot vertical assent)! These are dependent on wind conditions. Horse drawn haywagon rides are provided throughout the afternoon as are free helium balloons and refreshments for the kids. Face painting and magician demonstrations for everyone's entertainment. A wood stove heated pavilion is available as are warm and cold free refreshments. Entry to all activities is free, except for the ice-fishing derby. The event date is Sunday January 23rd starting at 11AM.

Toboggan Races with 2, 3 and 4 person categories, people of all ages may compete. Toboggans are supplied, but you can bring your own. This event is scheduled for Osceola Park on Gale Avenue, but if conditions are not adequate the event will be held at Clapp Park on West Housatonic Street. The event date is Sunday January 30th. Registration starts at 11AM, timed runs start at Noon. Entry is free of charge.

City Downhill Slalom Ski Meet means competition for youngsters under the age of 13. Held at Bousquet Ski area. Each entrant has at least 2 runs down the hill, best time counts towards trophies. The event date is Saturday February 5th starting registration at 9AM, racing at 10AM. Entry is free of charge.

Cross Country Ski Races are open to all ages. Held the last 2 years at Canterbury Farm Ski Touring area on Fred Snow Road in Becket MA. The event date is Sunday February 6th. Registration starts at 9AM. Entry is free of charge.

Automobile Ice Time Trials which is a 1-1.5 mile slalom course set up on the frozen surface of Onota Lake at the Controy Pavilion on Lakeway Drive. Open to all licensed drivers with automobiles equipped with seatbelts. Helmets are also required, loaners are available. This event is co-sanctioned this year by the Mohawk Hudson Region of the Sports Car Club of America. A driver may enter more than one vehicle. Loaner cars may be available at additional cost to cover fuel expenses. Results of the 1997 Ice Trials event. Results of the 1999 Ice Trials event. The 2000 event date is Saturday and Sunday February 12th +13th. Registration at 9AM, timed runs start at 11AM. Entry is $20 per entrant. Pictures from previous events.

Queen's Coronation Ball is the culmination of the Queen Contest. The Queen and lady-in-waiting for the following season are chosen and crowned. Other awards, such as top button seller and Miss Congeniality are presented. College scholarships are the top awards. The event date is Friday February 18th at the Itam Lodge starting at 9PM, tickets are $7 per person.

Pittsfield Short Track Speed Skating Championships are held at the Vietnam Veterans Skating Rink in North Adams MA. The Pittsfield Speed Skating Club of the Pittsfield Department of Community Development, Parks and Recreation, is the host team for this event. The 2000 event date is Saturday February 19th starting at Noon. There is an entry fee and entrants are members of the Amateur Speedskating Union. There is no fee for spectators.

Anything-goes Sled Races are open to people of all ages. This is the second year for this event and will again be held at Clapp Park on West Housatonic Street. The event date is Sunday February 20th. Registration starts at 11AM. Entrants can be any age from infant to seniors. Bring your cardboard box, snow tube, sled, plastic swimming pool or antique bathtub. If you can drag it to the top of the hill you can race it! Entry is free of charge.

The city of Pittsfield provides seed money for the Pittsfield Winter Carnival, which is held under the auspices of the Department of Community Services, Parks and Recreation. If you're interested in helping, contact us please! Meetings are 7 PM most Wednesday evenings during January and February at the Springside House on upper North Street, Pittsfield.

Here's a summary of the above year 2000 events schedule to print for your refrigerator!

For event location directions and other information, call 413-499-9343 9:00-4:00 weekdays.

For more information on the Berkshires, go here: http://www.berkshireweb.com/