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Auburn WinterFest happening this weekend

The Parks & Rec department has coordinated events happening through the weekend, and encourages all residents to spend time outdoors.

AUBURN, Maine — This week's light snowfall came at the perfect time for many in Auburn, as the city kicks off its Winter Festival Friday. This year due to the pandemic, the main goal of the weekend is to encourage all residents to spend time outdoors.

"There is plenty to do outdoors in Maine - with or without snow,” said Auburn Recreation Director Sabrina Best. “And we encourage outdoor recreation in our city, especially all the various trail systems."

Typically, Auburn's WinterFest includes larger celebrations, however due to COVID-19, there are limited number of outdoor activities organized throughout the weekend. 

"Our goal is really promote and get people out even if they're not comfortable doing it themselves, there's a few grouped activities that we'll be practicing our basic social distancing, mask, and other CDC requirements," said Best.

Events kick off on Friday at 10 a.m. with a 'Virtual Story Time” put on by the Auburn Public Library on its Facebook page. The Library is also sponsoring the Auburn Storywalk, which is a series of display cases in downtown Auburn, stretching along the Riverwalk from Bonney Park to Festival Plaza.

On Saturday at 9:45 a.m., there will be a guided winter hike at Mount Apatite presented by Friends of Mount Apatite. Pre-registration is required through Auburn Recreation 

A tree and bird identification Walk will be happening on Sunday, Jan. 31 at 3 p.m. at the Pettengill Park Trail system. This event is hosted by the Auburn Conservation Commission/Community Forest Subcommittee and you can preregister by emailing auburn.me.conservation@gmail.com or by calling 207-852-0770.

Two events that have been postponed due to lack of snow are dog sledding and a guided nature snowshoe tour. That has been moved to Saturday, Feb. 27 and Sunday, Feb. 28 from 1-4 p.m. at East Auburn Baptist Church. 

The city has launched an interactive map with activities, and areas to visit this winter.

The Parks and Recreation department has also made 30 pairs of snowshoes available to rent. For information, call 333-6611.