WINNIPEG — Festival du Voyageur organizers are rolling with the punches being dealt by Mother Nature on the opening weekend of the 10-day event.
A rapid thaw and spring-like temperatures on Saturday forced the closure of the Red River Mutual Trail at The Forks, where many Festival activities had been planned to complement the fun to be had at Voyageur Park across the river.
Rendez-vous on Ice has been cancelled for this evening, as well as Winter Pride.
Fashion on Ice scheduled for Sunday at 4 p.m. will be moved from the Red River Mutual Trail to the Johnston Terminal stairway at The Forks.
Discothèque on Ice, scheduled to follow Fashion on Ice, is cancelled. Some of the DJs booked for the event will perform from 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. in Bar Gibraltar at Voyageur Park today.
Winnipeg reached a high of 5°C on Saturday under plenty of sunshine.
The Wild Winter Canoe Race scheduled for February 20 has also been cancelled.
“This spring-like weather has made for difficult choices for all of us,” said Karen Menkis, organizing chair of the race.
“River authorities have closed the river trail due to safety concerns — concerns we share and support. While we are disappointed to cancel the 2017 Wild Winter Canoe Race on the Red River, we feel confident our teams, sponsors, volunteers and fans appreciate the challenges and our commitment to their well-being.”