Saranac Lake Winter Carnival

Saranac Lake, NY

The Saranac Lake Winter Carnival is set to begin this year on Friday, January 31, 2020 – the theme is “Myths & Legends.” Running ten days until the 9th, you can find the official schedule on their website when it becomes available.

For those of you unfamiliar with the Winter Carnival, it has enjoyed a rich history of fun and frolic. Starting in early 1897 as a one-day event of outdoor sports and games presented by the newly formed Pontiac Club, the Winter Carnival has grown to be one of the region’s most popular winter events.

The Ice Palace is a central feature of Winter Carnival and is hugely popular – just search “Saranac Lake Winter Carnival” in Google to view the many images visitors and residents alike have taken over the years. While there was a gap from 1920-1955 during which the Ice Palace was not built, since its modern comeback in 1955 it has been an integral part of the Winter Carnival.

View a Google Search results page of many Winter Carnival Ice Palace images.

Winter Carnival includes many other popular events, such as two parades and three sets of spectacular fireworks, and it begins with the coronation of the King and Queen on the first Friday night of the 10-day festival. The King and Queen are selected from a group of nominees who have made significant contributions to the well-being of the community through their volunteer work.

They are joined by a Prince and Princess elected by the two local colleges, Paul Smith’s College and North Country Community College, and everyone is surrounded by a Royal Court of Lads and Lassies elected by the Saranac Lake High School.

The Royal Court is completed with six pages, a Chamberlain, and an Archbishop.

As can be seen by this careful selection of Royalty, the Winter Carnival is a celebration of life and commitment to the local community, and made possible by the efforts of many volunteers and sponsors.

Be sure to take part in the carnival while you’re in the area, and if you’re still making plans be sure to schedule your 2020 visit during the ten days of January 31-February 9.

From Lake Placid: 8 miles
Carnival Photographer: Mark Kurtz Photography
Carnival Button & Poster: Garry Trudeau