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Here's what's happening the first weekend of Fur Rondy

  • Author: Alaska Dispatch News
  • Updated: February 24
  • Published February 23

Arleigh Reynolds, of Salcha, drives his dog team down Fourth Avenue during the start of the Fur Rondy Sled Dog race in Anchorage on Friday, Feb. 21, 2014. Reynolds finished the first of three days of racing in first place with a time of 1:30:57. (Bob Hallinen / ADN archive)

Bust out your collectors' pins and don your favorite fur (real or faux) — it's Fur Rondy time. Here are some of the highlights from the first weekend (to see a full schedule, check out furrondy.net/events).

World Open Championship Sled Dog Races

Get your dog-racing fix this weekend as sprint mushing teams run a 25-mile route for three days. The route begins in downtown Anchorage on the corner of Fourth Avenue and D Street, winds through the Anchorage trail system and loops the dog sled team back to downtown. Noon, Friday-Sunday, Fourth Avenue and D Street. Free.

Carnival

Many — OK, maybe most — U.S. towns have carnivals now and then. Fewer have carnivals where people willingly pay to be flown through the frigid air in single-digit temperatures. Here, it's a Rondy tradition. The Fur Rondy carnival opens Friday and runs through March 5. Look for the Zipper, Gravitron and company at Third Avenue and E Street. See furrondy.net for times.

The Rondy fireworks explode in the sky over the Ferris wheel at the Rondy Carnival in downtown Anchorage on the first weekend of the Anchorage Fur Rondy on Saturday, Feb. 28, 2015. (Bob Hallinen / ADN archive)

Parade and fireworks

Check out the restored cars, roller girls and others parade through downtown. 10:30 a.m., Saturday, Fifth Avenue.

Fireworks will be later that evening starting at 6:55 p.m. They'll be set off in downtown Anchorage (facing Ship Creek and the small boat harbor), so plan your vantage point accordingly.

Outhouse races

Teams will build their own port-a-potties and outhouses, plop them on skis and race down Fourth Avenue. In additional to the usual awards categories, there will be honors bestowed on the most colorful, cleanest, most realistic and "best architecture." 4 p.m. Saturday, Fourth Avenue and E Street.

The GCI Snow Sculpture Competition, a popular Fur Rondy event, was judged on Sunday, Feb. 24, 2013. People are welcome to check out the snow sculptures at Ship Creek across from the Comfort Inn. (Bill Roth / ADN archive)

Frostbite Footrace 5K and 2.5K

Downtown Anchorage will be flooded with costumed runners hoofing it from the Fifth Avenue Skywalk (between the Egan Center and the Alaska Center for the Performing Arts) and the finish at Sixth Avenue and H Street. Check out the urban wildlife and cheer them along. Starts at 9:30 a.m. Saturday.

Hide and Horn Auction

A quintessential part of the Fur Rendezvous festival. The hides and horns for the auction were collected by the state Department of Fish and Game from animals that were killed accidentally, in self-defense or poached. Items will be available for viewing at 9 a.m. Noon-3 p.m. Saturday-Sunday, Third Avenue and E Street. Free.

Auctioneer David Childs with the Alaska Trappers Association takes bids on a Dall sheep cape displayed by Pete Reddington during the annual State Hide and Horn Auction at Fur Rondy in Anchorage on Sunday, March 1, 2015. (Bill Roth / ADN archive)

Snow sculpture competition

Let's face it — our winter weather has shown itself capable of veering into melty territory the last couple years. All the more reason to the check out the snow sculptures while they're in tiptop shape, aka Sunday, when the sculptures will be judged at 10 a.m. Awards are announced at noon that day. Otherwise, they are available for viewing from 10 a.m.-10 p.m. daily on Ship Creek Avenue, across from Comfort Inn.

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