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Deerfield starts Winter Carnival tradition

Traditions must begin somewhere, and Deerfield's Parks and Recreation Department is hoping to start a new one today with the town's very first and nearly free Winter Carnival opening Saturday.

"We basically just wanted to get some sort of tradition going for the winter time, and winter carnival was something new that really hasn't been seen," said Parks and Recreation Special Events Coordinator Erica Almeida.

The carnival will feature a variety of events, games and attractions geared for children and adults alike. An outdoor area by the town gazebo will offer horse-drawn sleigh rides, an all-day bonfire, and a host of outdoor games including snowshoe races, sled-pole races, a snowball target competition, and a football game between the Deerfield Parks and Recreation Department and Fire Department.

"We're so competitive here at Parks and Rec," laughed Almeida. "We feel bad for them, they have to deal with us."

Inside the nearby Town Hall will be carnival style games and attractions like ring toss, can toss and face painting. Resident wizard Garret the Great will also be inside, showing off his sorcery.

"We tried to make it for every age level, for kids all the way through adults, which is why we have a lot of adult-type contests tomorrow outside," said Almeida. "It's funny, adults can be some of the most competitive ones. They're like big kids."

Closing the day off, the floor will be cleared to make way for a mass "World Record Gangnam Style" dance.

Everything at the carnival will be free with the exception of concessions, something which was made possible largely by donations.

The first Deerfield Winter Carnival will be held from 11 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. today in and around the Town Hall on 10 Church Street.

For more information, contact the Parks and Recreation Department at 463-8811, ext. 305, or by e-mail at


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