Stockholm welcomes locals and guests to revived Winter Carnival

2 months ago

STOCKHOLM, Maine — For the second year, Stockholm hosted a revived version of the town’s famous Winter Carnival.

First held in 1937, Winter Carnival grew into a beloved tradition for the small town, with folks taking part in sled, snowshoe and ski races. With fewer young people at the time, the Winter Carnival activities ceased in 2006, two years after the town lost its only elementary school.

Last year, a new volunteer recreation committee brought back the carnival to an enthusiastic response. With more young families in town, Stockholm is looking to continue old and new traditions.

“I have a lot of childhood memories from Winter Carnival, and it’s so fun to see families making those memories, too,” Lena Lowry, a member of Stockholm’s recreation committee, said during the activities Saturday.

After a morning of ski and snowshoe races for children and adults, families gathered inside Stockholm’s former school building for a lunch of chicken stew, chili, sandwiches and pastries, many of which came courtesy of community donors.

Blake Leavitt, 12, of Woodland pulls Roulin Tateishi-Ouellette, 12, of Stockholm during the Winter Carnival boat team relay races Saturday. (Melissa Lizotte | Aroostook Republican)

Stockholm native Dawn Peterson attended Winter Carnival with her granddaughter, 5-year-old Deliah Peterson of Caribou, and was eager to pass down her memories and traditions. Deliah later took part in the carnival’s boat team relay and snowtube and sled races.

In past decades, Stockholm’s Winter Carnival had been dedicated to Dawn Peterson’s aunt, Karen Anderson, who was an active skier.

“It’s great to see friends and relatives making these wonderful traditions like people did years ago,” said Dawn Peterson, who now lives in Caribou.

In total, around 100 children and adults took part in the activities, with even more showing up throughout the afternoon for boat team and snowtube races. Several families came from as far as Hamlin and Westfield.

Brooke-Ann Olson, 15, of Hamlin laughs while sliding down the hill during Stockholm’s snowtube and sled races Saturday. (Melissa Lizotte | Aroostook Republican)

Even those who came as spectators were looking forward to making future memories with family. Katie Michaud of Perham watched her grandchildren 2-year-old Blake and 2-month-old Calvin St. Peter of Woodland have fun on the playground as the festivities went on.

“We wanted to support the community’s events. I love getting outside with my grandchildren,” Michaud said.