Activity options for winter in a city that never thaws
Winter doesn’t have to be boring. Sure, the snowy roads, broken cars, and endless school assignments make the months of January to March about as exciting as watching paint dry and create the perfect situation for seasonal depression. But, if you look, there are plenty of things to do to beat the winter blues. It is 2022 though, and after the last two years, COVID-19 case numbers skyrocketing, and frigid temperatures reaching –50-degrees Celsius, it can be hard to want to do anything. Now more than ever, it’s important to get out to support your mental health, physical health, and your community.
Unfortunately, due to the case numbers in the province, many events are being canceled – but Frost Regina, a winter festival occurring from February 4 to 13, is still set to proceed as planned. It will be the first year the festival has been on, and there are plenty of things to do all over the city and for any budget. Events include sleigh rides, brewery tours, dog sledding, ice skating, Regina Restaurant Week, and more. You can participate in Victoria Park, Wascana Centre, and The Warehouse district events. If you’d like more information or specifics, you can check out their website: https://frostyqr.ca.
If you can’t make events work due to a hectic schedule or prefer to set off on your own or with a close friend, there’s plenty to do in those fleeting moments of spare time. There are many hills in the city that are great for tobogganing. A favorite childhood activity of any kid in the prairies, it not only is incredibly stress-relieving to fly down a hill, but it’s also a great workout and an easy activity to do while socially distanced. You can also head over to Fresh Air Experience on Victoria Ave to rent snowshoes or cross-country skis to help you experience Wascana Centre in all its winter glory. If you do not feel that adventurous, it’s okay to grab a hot chocolate from one of Regina’s many coffee shops and just take a stroll around the park.
Chelsea Galloway from Tourism Regina answered a few questions for the Carillon about what to do – and what not to miss – in Regina this winter.
What is the number one can’t-miss activity in the city this winter?
I think ice skating. There’s going to be two really cool opportunities for getting out and skating. One is Ice Ville located in the stadium. That’s an experience that anybody that’s either local or visiting here should check out. They have ice skate rentals too, which I know is sometimes a problem. Not everyone has their own set of skates, so that’s really cool. The other one that people need to check out is the rink that’s going to be opening up in Wascana Centre on the lake in front of the Legislative Building. That’ll be just a really cool thing to do.
COVID-19 case numbers are on the rise in the province. Is that something people should be concerned about when looking for activities?
COVID protocols and keeping everyone safe is definitely number one priority for all of the businesses that are participating in winter activities and in the winter festival. Everyone is encouraging people to rapid test and stay home if they’re not feeling well. Wear your mask and maintain your distance. Those are the key messages that you’ll see at all of the hubs and anywhere that you’re going to experience winter indoors, especially right now. It’s definitely a priority. We want people to stay safe, but we also want people to get out, enjoy your community.
What is something you want people, especially university students, to keep in mind as we prepare for the final stretch of winter?
I think it’s really easy. especially during midterms and when it’s cold, to stay at home and think there’s nothing you can do and you really have no options. But if you go to tourismregina.com, if you kind of just get out and start exploring, you will see that there are so many things to do. And, you know, if you’re walking around the park, you’ll see people snowshoeing and cross-country skiing or sitting for a hot chocolate at the Willow. So, whatever it is that you like to do, you can definitely do it here. We are a winter city. I think the winter festival is really going to start paving the way for that and encouraging people to get out, and not just in the summer months, but experience what we have here in winter too.