HOWARD CITY — Sun and snow made a beautiful contrast Saturday at the third annual Howard City Winterfest.
Children from throughout the neighborhood and out of town flocked to property near the Timothy C. Hauenstein Reynolds Township Library for sledding, snow painting and frozen chicken bowling.
Prentiss and Melody Rumble and their four young daughters recently moved from Shelbyville to Grant. They decided to check out the winter festival in Howard City, about 20 miles from their new home. Tamra Rumble, 4, tried her hand at frozen chicken bowling while her little sister Rebekah, 3, watched.
“We’re really liking this area, the events and everything,” said Prentiss Rumble.
Cheryl Wright of Howard City brought her daughter, Sophia, 8, and daughter’s friend, Mattilyn Thompkins, 8, of Cedar Springs, to their first Winterfest. The girls enjoyed painting snowballs with colored water.
“The kids wanted to have fun in the snow with everybody else,” Cheryl Wright said. “It’s great.”
Howard City Harvest Festival Queen Kailey Grospin and First Runner-up Angela Gray kept busy picking up bowling pins in the snow as children lobbed frozen chickens wrapped in plastic grocery bags from nearby Leppink’s.
“It’s fun for kids because they get to do a lot of free activities and play in the snow,” said Grospin of the festival.
“My brothers are really looking forward to the turkey bowling,” Gray added. “That’s the main reason they wanted to come.”
Montcalm County Commissioner Ron Baker was responsible for helping keep a fire stoked near the library. Snowmobilers went flying by down the White Pine Trail as people gathered around the fire to warm up and socialize.
“We planned it around the perfect weather,” Baker said. “The snow and sun are beautiful.”
The entertainment tent outside Latitudes Roadhouse & Steelhead Tavern was full Saturday night as Grand Rapids cover band The Outer Vibe played to a large crowd. A nearby indoor concert also attracted a capacity crowd as local bluegrass/country band Midnight Cattle Callers played Zellie’s Opry House.
Winterfest was sponsored by the Panhandle Area Chamber of Commerce, the village of Howard City and the Downtown Development Authority.