Winterlude Snowflake Kingdom slides north to make room for Mosaïvernales

Winterlude's Snowflake Kingdom will be moving to the north end of Jacques-Cartier Park this year to make room for the winter version of MosaïCanada.

Waiters' and Waitresses' Race on Ice among events happening on canal skateway

Winterlude 2018 runs from Feb. 2 to 19 across Ottawa-Gatineau. (Michel Aspirot/CBC)

Winterlude's Snowflake Kingdom will be moving to the north end of Jacques-Cartier Park this year to make room for the winter version of MosaïCanada.

That's one the changes announced for the 40th annual Winterlude celebration, which this year takes place in the National Capital Region from Feb. 2 to 19.

The Snowflake Kingdom will still be the home for kids' slides and also offer nordic activities and performances. But it is moving to the north end of the park at 350 Laurier Street.

The winter playground's former location to the south will be home to Mosaïvernales, the winter iteration of this summmer's popular sculpture exhibit MosaïCanada. Mosaïvernales takes place from Jan. 26 to March 4, but its hours will differ and an entrance fee will apply.

"You're still going to have the great snow slides, you're going to have tube slides this year, there's going to be snow sculptures, everything like that," said Canadian Heritage spokesperson Natalie Huneault.

Huneault said there will also be an aerial trample wall show at the park created for the 40th anniversary.

This year's event will feature a new location for the Snowflake Kingdom. 0:45

The Snowflake Kingdom move was unveiled Monday as Canadian Heritage announced the schedule for the annual winter festival.

In addition to Jacques-Cartier Park, the festival will also take place at Ottawa's Confederation Park, the home of the Crystal Garden of ice sculptures, Ottawa City Hall and the Rideau Canal Skateway, as well as other locations throughout both Ottawa and Gatineau.

Bed race, dragon boat race return to canal 

Events returning to the Rideau Canal Skateway include last year's dragon boat race and the 38th annual bed race.

An older Winterlude event returning to the skateway is the Waiters' and Waitresses' Race on Ice, in which servers from restaurants, hotels and bars take part in a team competition.

The ice dragon boat festival is returning to Winterlude for its second year. (courtesy of Ottawa Ice Dragon Boat Festival)

"This year our theme is, I Love My Winterlude," Huneault said. "So we want to bring back memories back for people, so a lot of older events have come back, such as the Waiters' and Waitresses' Race."

An ice sculpture at Confederation Park will also commemorate another older event, when harness racers would compete in trotting races across the canal.

​Here are some dates to key events during the festival:

  • Friday, Feb. 2: Festival begins. Snowflake Kingdom opens. 31st Crystal Ice Carving competition begins at Confederation Park.
  • Sat., Feb. 3: 35th Annual Winterlude Triathlon takes place at Dow's Lake.
  • Fri. Feb. 9, Sat., Feb. 10: 2nd annual Ice Dragon Boat Festival on Rideau Canal Skateway.
  • Sat. Feb. 17: 38th annual Accora Village Bed Race on Rideau Canal Skateway.
  • Sun. Feb. 18: Waiters' and Waitresses' Race on Ice on Rideau Canal Skateway.

For a complete list of events, go to the Winterlude 2018 website.