WORTHINGTON - Winterfest, Worthington’s annual January celebration, will take place Jan. 18-19, with many of the activities set to be hosted at Sunset Park and the Worthington Event Center.


Coordinated by the Worthington Area Chamber of Commerce, Winterfest celebrates winter fun and community gathering. Festivities begin Friday evening and run through Saturday night.


Andy Johnson, executive director and CEO of Worthington Area YMCA, helps plan Winterfest each year. He explained that to plan the festival, the Chamber selects a weekend for the celebration and then encourages local community organizations to put on the events. Ideally, the Chamber would like to see Winterfest expand, with new events each year.


New for 2019 is a puzzle tournament organized by the Young Professionals Network. In 2020, the Chamber is hoping to start an outdoor ice disc golf tournament. Past Winterfest attendees will recognize perennial Winterfest favorites like the Deep Freeze Dip and the 2-mile “Don’t Get Lost in the Frost” walk/run.


Here’s the schedule of Winterfest events:


5 to 7 p.m.: Opening ceremony with live music, registration and money due for Deep Freeze Dip, registration for walk/run event and RedHot Chili cookoff, Worthington Event Center

5 to 6:45 p.m.: People’s Choice voting on RedHot Chili Cookoff, Worthington Event Center

5 to 8 p.m.: Keagan’s Cause Silent Auction (winners announced at 8:15 p.m.), Worthington Event Center

5 p.m.: Winterfest Social, tacos sold from 7 p.m. until gone, Worthington Event Center

5:30 to 9:30 p.m. Tommy Lee Binford live music, Worthington Event Center


All-day open skate, Worthington Arena

9 a.m. to noon: SW MN Fishing Club Ice Fishing Derby (registration from 7 to 9 a.m.), Sunset Park

9 a.m.: Winterfest 2-mile “Don’t Get Lost in the Frost” walk/run, starts and ends at Worthington Area YMCA

9 a.m. to noon: Puzzle Tournament, Worthington Event Center

9 a.m.-5 p.m.: Blue Jay Open wrestling tournament, Minnesota West Community and Technical College

Noon to 1 p.m.: IceHole games, Sunset Park

1 p.m.: Radio Works Deep Freeze Dip, Sunset Park

1 to 4 p.m.: Youth Swim Meet, Worthington Area YMCA

7 p.m.: Keagan’s Cause Benefit Concert for Autism, with performers Luke Henderson and Tim Montana, Worthington Event Center


Also on the docket: Broomball tournament on Lake Okabena (time to be determined) and Ice Hole (think corn hole, but with ice) during the Deep Freeze Dip.