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Hello Winter


Hello Winter 2022

Grab your mittens! In lieu of traditional Barrie Winterfest festivities, Barrie celebrated the season with tons of winter fun during Hello Winter.

​That's a wrap for 2022! Hello Winter featured activities and events for everyone to enjoy throughout February and March, including some Barrie Winterfest favourites. City nights lit up with unique art installations, and everyone was invited to grab a hot cocoa and explore. If you attended, share your pictures with us by tagging the City of Barrie on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.

Special thanks to the Government of Ontario, TELUS Park Place Barrie, Four Points by Sheraton Barrie, Sunbelt Rentals Barrie, our media partners, and all who participated in Hello Winter!

Hello Winter was funded in part by:

Hello Winter 2022 Programming

Ice Sculptures
February 4-6 at Meridian Place

One of the most popular features at Barrie Winterfest, enjoy stunning masterpieces carved from 300 lb blocks of ice by professional sculptors from Iceculture​. This year's theme celebrates the wildlife and natural beauty of northern Canada. Sculptures will light up to enjoy at night as well.

Watch talented artists at work creating these beautiful sculptures - live carving demos will pop-up Saturday between 10am and 4pm, Sunday between 12 noon and 2pm.

Share your pictures with us! Tag the City of Barrie on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.
Hot Cocoa Trail 
Weekends in February & March (starting February 5)

Downtown Barrie's Hot Cocoa Trail returns every weekend in February and March. Enjoy deliciously unique hot chocolate inspired beverages and dishes created by downtown coffee shops, cafes, restaurants and bistros or make a donation to a participating retailer's charity of choice and enter to win a DWNTWN E-Gift Card. Each purchase or donation gives you one ballot to enter (1st prize $250, 2nd prize $100, 3rd prize $50). A full list of Hot Cocoa Trail creations and participating locations will be available soon.​ Supporting local has never tasted so good!

Open Air Dunlop 
February 5 & March 19

Downtown Barrie is yours to explore this winter at Open Air Dunlop! On February 5 and March 19, a portion of Dunlop Street will be closed to vehicles and open for you to enjoy on foot....or snowshoe or sled! So bundle up and support one-of-a-kind shops and local restaurants, explore the Hot Cocoa Trail, enjoy Hello Winter activities, and warm up by the fire at Meridian Place.

Enchanted Winter Trail 
February 4 to 13, 5pm-9pm daily at Sunnidale Park (weather-permitting) 

Explore an enchanted winter experience featuring art installations inspired by Canada's natural environment. These stunning installations Inspired by Icebergs were created in collaboration between Cobalt Connects and artist Tanis MacArthur.

Bring your showshoes or cross-country skis and continue along the groomed trail to take in the winter lights in the Sunnidale Arboretum.​

Parking is available at the Dorian Parker Community Centre​, 227 Sunnidale Rd. Trail is groomed and snow-covered - sleds, winter footwear, snowshoes, or cross-country skis are recommended.​ Installations are weather/wind dependent.

Share your pictures with us! Tag the City of Barrie on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.

Enchantedtrailthumb Enchantedtrailthumb

Nature in Winter Kick-off
February 5, 11am-3pm at Heritage Park

Learn about furry and feathered friends with Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority​Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority, and Speaking of Wildlife​​. Enjoy a storywalk with the Barrie Public Library and learn about constellations and fire safety with a craft to make your own winter luminary at home courtesy of City of Barrie Parks Planning and Barrie Fire & Emergency Services.

Nature in Winter Pop-up Fun
February 5 to March 18 at Various City Parks

Get out with your family and enjoy winter at a park near you! Kids can explore interactive nature-based activities independently at their own pace. Learn about animals and their tracks, play QR code-activated games, and more.

  • ​​February 5-10 - Heritage Park
  • February 11-17 - Shear Park
  • February 18-24 - Sunnidale Park
  • February 25-March 3 - Sandringham Park
  • March 4-10 - Lampman Lane Park
  • March 11-18 - East Bayfield Park
Nature in Winter Forest Bathing 
February 6 to March 18​ at Sunnidale Park​

Bask in the healing benefits of nature. Learn the basics of forest bathing with Beth Foster and decompress while you connect with the forest of Sunnidale Park. Sessions are free, and both in-person and virtual options are available.

Registration is required — email to reserve your spot. Please include the name of each person in your group, phone number, and the date you're hoping to book.

  • February 6 – 12:45-2:30pm @ Sunnidale Park
  • February 11 – 7:00-8:30pm @ Virtual (Zoom)
  • February 27 – 12:45-2:30pm @ Sunnidale Park (FULL)
  • March 6 – 12:45-2:30pm @ Sunnidale Park
  • March 11 – 7:00-8:30pm @ Virtual (Zoom)
  • March 13 – 12:45-2:30pm @ Sunnidale Park
  • March 15 – 12:45-2:30pm @ Sunnidale Park
  • March 17 – 12:45-2:30pm @ Sunnidale Park
  • March 18 – 12:45-2:30pm @ Sunnidale Park

*Masks are required, capacity is limited per session, participants must be at least 14 years old, children must be accompanied by an adult.​

​Historic Walking Tours 
February 6, February 20 and March 13, 1pm - 2pm at Meridian Place​

Join Steve Travers, the City of Barrie's Official Town Crier, for a fabulous 1-hour tour of downtown Barrie where he will tell tales of the amazing Victorian era pioneers who came to our little town before it became a city.

*Masks are required.

Nature in Winter Snowshoeing 
February 8 to March 3 at Sunnidale Park

Try snowshoeing and experience the true beauty of nature in winter! Learn about our local flora and fauna along with the natural history of Sunnidale Park on a guided tour. Free and all equipment provided by Snow Valley.

Registration is required — email to reserve your spot. Please include the name and height of each person in your group, phone number, and the date you're hoping to book.

  • February 8 – 6:30-8:00pm (FULL)
  • February 10 – 6:30-8:00pm
  • February 12 – 1:30-3:00pm
  • February 15 – 1:30-3:00pm​
  • February 17 – 1:30-3:00pm
  • February 22 – 1:30-3:00pm
  • February 24 – 1:30-3:00pm
  • February 26 – 1:30-3:00pm​ (FULL)
  • March 1 – 1:30-3:00pm​​
  • March 3 – 1:30-3:00pm

*Masks are required, capacity is limited per session, participants must be at least 8 years old, children must be accompanied by an adult.

Skating Party sponsored by TEL​US​ 
March 11, 6pm-9pm at Circle at the Centre Rink, City Hall

Grab your skates and enjoy a skating party featuring a live DJ. Generously supported by TELUS.

*Dependent on weather and rink conditions. Masks are required.

Community Sculpture Challenge 
February 18 to March 7

Bundle up and head outside to build your masterpiece! Get creative with snow and lights, carving, colours, and props to make it unique. ​Submit your sculpture for a chance to win a prize, including passes for snowtubing at Snow Valley​!

Click here to submit your photo!

Remember to play safe​! ​

Family Day Adventure 
February 21, 10am-2pm at Barrie Community Sports Complex

Choose your adventure! Join us for horse-drawn sleigh rides, outdoor skating, play some broomball, try one of our kicksleds, and then try your hand at axe throwing. Warm up by the bonfire and maybe try your hand at a woodland craft. Don't forget to bring your own toboggan! There is no cost to this event, so why not bundle up and enjoy a winter adventure?​

Pre-registration not required. 

Chimes Interactive Art Installation
February 20 to March 20 at Meridian Place

Chimes is an interactive art installation that demonstrates how small actions can create large impact. It will fill Meridian Place with a symphony of sound and light that results from movement of the chimes - whether by wind or human interaction.

Chimes was created and executed by Collectif Blackbox, a coproduction of Quartier des Spectacles Partnership and MONTREAL EN LUMIERE, creation Fete des Lumieres of Lyon (2017)​.


Projected Art Program
February 25 to March 20, Downtown Barrie 

The Hello Winter Projection Program features several unique projection-based art installations that bring light to winter nights in downtown Barrie. Artists from across Canada were invited to submit video or animated artworks that responded to the theme of 'light'​. The following are featured:​

The installations are featured nightly at locations within walking distance. Use the online map to guide your experience and to learn more about each artist and the inspiration for their work.

​*This project was supported by the Barrie Public Art Committee​

Barrie Film Festival 

Barrie Film Festival - your Best Friend for Film - presents year-round programming featuring thought-provoking and entertaining films from Canada and around the world. The Screen One Film Series features I'm Your Man on February 2nd and Parallel Mothers on March 2nd. Reel Stories​ returns March 24-27 with a weekend film festival of documentaries inspired by true events and real people.

​​Barrie Public Library

​​Check out a variety of programs offered for all ages, including Black History 365​​. Visit the BPL calendar​ for a full list of events.

Storytelling in Africa 
February 6, 13, 20

Join BPL staff member Modupe as she shares various stories to commemorate Black History Month.

Write ON!
February 13-19

Online workshops and presentations designed for emerging and established writers, from self-publishing to content creation.

Family Day Grab and Go Craft
February 19, 10am-11am

Make a snowman pop-up puppet and enjoy a family puppet show! Drop by the Library in advance (starting February 12) to pick-up your grab-and-go bag​ of supplies.

Barrie Skating Club​

Learn to Skate
Saturdays, February 26 to March 19, 12pm-1pm​
Join the Barrie Skating Club every Saturday for ​​fun, engaging and FREE skating lessons at the City Hall Circle at the Centre skating rink.
*Weather and rink conditions permitting. Rink remains open for everyone to use.

Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority

Spring Into Birding
March 12, 9:30am-12:30pm
​​Enjoy a guided birding hike to learn about the birds at Scanlon Creek Conservation Area​ and connect with nature through the joys of birdwatching. Families can also take a Storywalk, visit self-guided stations to see amazing bird artifacts, make a birdfeeder, hand-feed chickadees and more.​ Free!

MacLaren Art Centre

Visit the MacLaren Art Centre during Hello Winter to enjoy their current exhibitions, including Wind Rose, Rachel MacFarlane: Broken Images, Where the Sun Beats ​(until March 6)​, and Henry Moore: Elephant Skull (until February 6). Gallery open Thursday to Sunday, 11am to 4pm.​​

​Families can enjoy the following programs and more:

Family Sunday 
Sundays February 6 to March 20, 1:30-3pm​

Every Sunday is family Sunday! Enjoy ​artist-led creative projects ideal for school-aged children. For all details, including how to register, visit MacLaren Family Sundays​.​​

*P​​re-registration required, $5+tax (free for members)​​​

Family Day ​​
February 21, 1:30-3pm

A regional artist will ​lead families through a fun collaborative project about togetherness.

*In-person registration opens at 1pm on the day of the workshop, maximum 25 participants, free

Hello Winter 2021 Programming

Re-visit Hello Winter 2021 programming for some seasonal fun, including the Hello Winter playlist on the City of Barrie's YouTube channel.

​Barrie Public Library (BPL)

video icon Storytime and Q&A with Speaking of Wildlife

Enjoy a Winterfest storytime with Sp​eaking of Wildlife and a special furry guest. Join Krystal and Fenn the Fox to read Winter Dance by Marion Dane Bauer followed by a wildlife Q&A.

This event is also featured under Speaking of Wildlife events further below.

BPL Black History 365​

Learn about Black history ​365 days of the year! BPL has created a virtual hub where you can access community voices and resources, stories about being Black in Canada, reading recommendations, National Film Board short film selections, and more.

MacLaren Art Centre

video icon Short Films for Families

The MacLaren has partnered with the National Film Board of Canada to present a curated roster of winter-themed, family-friendly short animations and films to view anytime from home, including: It’s Snow by Gayle Thomas (1974), Snow Cat by Sheldon Cohen (1998), and Stories from our Land: How to Build an Igloo by Allen Auksaq (2011).

Visit​hello-winter/ to watch!

video icon Video: MacLaren Snow Art

Learn how to make colourful snowy art at home! The MacLaren Art Centre’s Education Officer Christina Mancuso shows you how using materials you can find at home and your unlimited imagination:


Celebrating Black History Month

The MacLaren Art Centre offers a roster of virtual programs, films, events, and exhibitions celebrating Black History Month with more to be added throughout the month and beyond.

Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority

The Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority is dedicated to the preservation of a healthy environment and working with the community to help protect the water, land, and our future. Learn about how to appreciate our natural environment with help from their nature educators and fun activities for all ages.

Scavenger Hunt

Let's go on a scavenger hunt! Whether you're in your backyard or on a forest walk, use these guides to explore our natural world in a new way. You'll use your senses to observe nature and learn to identify evidence of wildlife in winter.

Level 1 - Use Your Senses

Level 2 - Animal Tracks

Nature Journal    

Keeping a nature journal is a great way to help you connect with the natural world around you and can be used to track your observations when exploring the outdoors. The Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority has provided a downloadable journal as a useful resource to get you started on this journey.

video icon How to Become a Community Scientist

Maegan, AKA Turtle, from the Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority shares how everyone can become a community scientist!


video icon NVCA Winter Wildlife

Take a walk with Nature Naomi to learn all about identifying and appreciating wildlife in their natural habitat!

video icon Nature Tracks with the NVCA

This event was held virtually via Zoom; watch the recording of Nature Tracks with the NVCA. Learn all about the ways we go about identifying animal skulls and footprints, nature journaling, and becoming a citizen scientist. This interactive session included a live Q&A with the engaging nature educators from the Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority.

Speaking of Wildlife

Speaking of Wildlife provides sanctuary to Ontario wildlife that cannot survive in the wild and they love to educate everyone at Winterfest about these beautiful species so we can better protect them in their natural habitat. Meet some of their furry and feathered friends, learn all about their life in winter, and take a behind-the-scenes tour of the Speaking of Wildlife facility.

video icon Video Series: Wildlife in Winter

F​​ollow-up with some of the furry and feathered friends we met on Canada Day to learn all about their life during the winter in a behind-the-scenes look with Speaking of Wildlife.

For all of the animal videos with Speaking of Wildlife, check out the Hello Winter playlist on the City of Barrie's YouTube channel.

video icon Storytime and Q&A

Enjoy a Winterfest storytime with Speaking of Wildlife and a special furry guest. Join Krystal and Fenn the Fox to read Winter Dance by Marion Dane Bauer followed by a wildlife Q&A.

This event is also featured under BPL events above.


Get ready to dance and sing along while TEAM T&J share some of their favourite things about Barrie!

thumbnail  thumbnail

Maple Syrup Tour

Take a virtual trip to Lalonde’s Maple Syrup Farm where we’ll get a behind-the-scenes look at how to make maple syrup and some of our favourite Barrie Winterfest treats:


Storytime with Barrie's Town Crier

Join Barrie’s Town Crier as he tells the story of the Barrie Jail ​that sits on Mulcaster Street, overlooking the city – from its unique architecture and history to the stories of some of those who “visited” long before it closed in 2001:


​Snow Sculpting with Siggi Buhler

Meet master woodcarver Siggi Buhler as he shares some of his experience snow carving at Barrie Winterfest in the past, and see his process on a smaller scale right from his own backyard studio.

video thumbnail: Snow Sculpting with Siggi Buhler  

Owl Prowl

Join City of Barrie Parks staff on an Owl Prowl. They’ll share their tips for how you can listen for and identify owls on your outdoor adventures. Use the Owl Prowl Fact Sheet to learn about what makes owls such amazing creatures and, while you’re at it, meet Nile the Barred Owl with Speaking of Wildlife.

video thumbnail: Owl Prowl 

Winter Yoga

Dress the kids warmly and head outside for winter yoga with your guide, Victoria. You’ll learn poses inspired by the natural world in winter. A great way to warm up for some winter fun!

thumbnail: Winter Yoga video 

Hello Winter 2022 Was Funded By



Hello Winter 2022 Was Generously Supported By

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