The winters of the early 1970s were long, cold, and snowy. At the annual Port Austin winter carnival, this was the spot to gather a team and play broomball. Families could make snowmen and drink hot chocolate. Back in the day, the festival was massive, complete with parades and the coronation of the Winter Carnival Queen. Postcards were also printed. The icy event returns for the third year in a row with the Port Austin Winter Carnival 2023.
This year’s Port Austin Winter Carnival 2023 takes place the last weekend in January. The chilly event restarted in 2021 after an 11-year absence from the Upper Thumb Social Event Calendar. While the focus will be the broomball tournament, the village’s ice arena will be hosting several events. The festivities begin on Friday, January 27th, and run through Sunday, January 29th, 2023.
Port Austin Winter Carnival 2023 Schedule of Events
The first event begins on Friday at 1:30 p.m. with a Village Green Snowman Contest. The Cornhole Tournament starts with a check-in at 6:30pm in the Old Gym. Play commences at 7 pm. There is a Broomball Captains meeting at 5:30pm. Cost per team is $100.
You can register your team on the Chamber website or follow this link. Port Austin 2023 Winter Carnival Event Registration. The snowman building contest begins, and The Bank 1884 is open as a warming station from 5-11 pm.
The day kicks off with a Tug-of-War and kids’ games at 11:30 a.m. Dodge ball starts at 2 pm along with games for kids and adults. A Mustache Contest begins at 4pm and the snowman judgeing content is at 5 pm.
At prior carnivals he Broomball Tournament at 11 a.m. on Railroad Street. If necessary, the five-player teams may resume tournament play at noon on Sunday. The Chamber’s Broomball Registration site indicates that the cost is $100 per team. The tournament schedule filled up quickly in years past, so act fast.
At noon, those who want to chill out can take a Polar Bear Dip in the ice-cold waters of Lake Huron. Each brave soul gets a t-shirt. The cost is $25. You can register your team on the Chamber website or follow this link. Port Austin 2023 Winter Carnival Polar Bear Dip Registration.
For more information and details and a specific schedule of events, see the Port Austin Chamber of Commerce Events Calendar.
Port Austin Winter Carnival 2023 Wearables
It wouldn’t be a Chamber of Commerce event if there weren’t a beefy sweatshirt or hoody for sale. The Chamber is currently preselling these thick sweatshirts online.
Video: Port Austin Winter Carnival Highlights 2021
- Caseville Shanty Days 2022 – This year’s Shanty days festivities start on, Friday, February 11th, 2022 with entertainment at several establishments in town. The event first started in 1992 as a snowmobile and motorcycle ice race south of Caseville on Mud Creek. The event was moved to town as a result of increasingly inconsistent ice and snow conditions.
- Cheeseburger Festival Caseville – The annual Cheeseburger in Caseville is a chance to experience a bit of Key West and NOLA atmosphere, tropical music and indulge in cheeseburgers. In prior years, officials placed estimates were that over 100,000 people visited the area during its 10 day festival.
- Chill Out at Caseville Shanty Days 2019 – Caseville Shanty 2019 is the 27th edition of this Winter Festival. This offers mid-winter fun on the ice. It’s the largest winter carnival in the Upper Thumb.
- Play on the Shore of a Michigan Beach – A blissful day on one of the many Michigan Beach with public parks along the shoreline of the Thumb. Playing in the sugar sand along the shore with kids is a favorite thing to do in the Upper Thumb.
- Run Around in the Upper Thumb – A friend of mine signed us up for a 5K run/walk during Cheeseburger festival several years ago. I’ll freely admit that I’m not into running or jogging. So it was a relief that he pointed out that we could walk it too. Which is what we did.