8th Annual Coopers Rock State Forest WinterFest Feb. 9

BRUCETON MILLS, W.Va. — The eighth annual Coopers Rock WinterFest is a dose of mid-winter fun. Scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 9, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., the event activities are organized by the Coopers Rock Foundation.

“It’s a day for all those who love wintertime outdoor recreation to come together,” said Coopers Rock State Forest Superintendent Jan Dzierzak.

WinterFest is a fundraiser for the foundation and has 13 events and attractions scheduled. Activities are based at the Day Use Parking Lot and surrounding area, a quarter mile from the I-68 Coopers Rock Exit. Various activities and contests and hikes will be offered during the day. Attendance is free, but donations will be accepted. Money raised at the event will go toward improving the state forest’s infrastructure.

Kid-friendly activities will be clustered within a few dozen yards of the parking area. The short sledding hill, the snow sculpture zone and Cooper Rocks’ one-of-a-kind Snowball target range are sure to grab kids’ attention and burn off some energy.

“One of the opportunities provided at WinterFest is an introduction to cross-country skiing and snowshoeing, free of charge,” Dzierzak said. “Those are the two-primary wintertime activities at Coopers Rock when there is enough snow.

Three WinterFest events feature competitions with one-of-a-kind handmade trophies for the winners. These include the Mass-Start Downhill Dash Cross-Country Skiing Race and The Women’s Fryinmg Pan Toss, which have been a part of every WinterFest. And new this year is a Men’s Snowball Showdown.

Two winter tree identification hikes also are scheduled: one around the festival site and the other to a nearby rocky maze. Additionally, there will be a temporary disc golf course set up with up to five baskets.

Hot coffee and hot chocolate will be available at the warming fire area. If there is no snow, the festival will continue with eight of the 13 events and attractions. Details are available at www.wvstateparks.com.