Bring your sweet tooth along to the pecan festival
February is pecan harvest time in Arizona, and the place to celebrate is Camp Verde's third annual Pecan, Wine and Antique Festival, Feb. 8 and 9. Front and center will be pecan pies. Also scheduled: wine tastings, live music (jazz and bluegrass), hayrides to a pecan farm, tours of the late 1800s Ft. Verde State Historic Park. Camp Verde is a one-hour drive north of Phoenix.
Contact Ft. Verde State Historic Park, 125 E. Hollamon St., Camp Verde, AZ 86322; (928) 567-0535, www.cvaz.org/parks/parkshome.htm.
Happy birthday to an icon of the old West
A birthday celebration for Buffalo Bill Cody, one of the legendary figures of the American West, will be Feb. 22 at the Buffalo Bill Museum and Grave in Golden, a half-hour drive west of Denver. Cody chose the spot as his burial site, and his grave overlooks the Great Plains and the Rockies. Look-alikes usually turn up in the crowd. Also planned: western music and entertainment.
Contact the Buffalo Bill Museum and Grave, 987 1/2 Lookout Mountain Road, Golden, CO 80401; (303) 526-0747, www.buffalobill.org.
Two cultures link arms at a dance and music event
The bicultural history of Brownsville is celebrated during Charro Days, Feb. 23 to March 2. Mariachi music, Tejano swing and Mexican folklorico dancing will be featured. The illuminated night parade Feb. 28 includes many in charro (Mexican cowboy) dress.
Contact Charro Days, P.O. Box 3247, Brownsville, TX 78523; (956) 542-4245, www.charrodays.org.
A festival of lights honors Edison's bright mind
Fort Myers' most famous resident, Thomas Edison, wintered there for 50 years, and his attachment to the town is celebrated at the Edison Festival of Light from Jan. 25 to Feb. 16. The public is invited for birthday cake at the Edison & Ford Winter Estates on Feb. 11. The highlight is the nighttime Festival of Light Grand Parade (floats and marching bands), which puts the lightbulb to extravagant use. Hymn singing will honor Edison's wife, Mary, and the Inventors Fair pays homage to all bright ideas.
Contact the Festival of Light, 2254 Edwards Drive, Fort Myers, FL 33901; (941) 334-2999, www.edisonfestival.org.
Sled dogs go the distance in the Lower 48
"Race to the Sky" is Montana's answer to the Alaskan Iditarod. This 350-mile sled dog competition, Feb. 7 to 13 from Helena to Condon to Lincoln, crosses the Continental Divide several times.
Viewing spots will be set up at the guest ranches and restaurants that also serve as race checkpoints: Cain Ridge West in Lincoln, Holland Lake Lodge near Condon, White Tail Ranch in Ovando and the Community Center in Seeley Lake, with the finish at the Hi-Country Beef Jerky store. All are accessible by car.
Contact Montana Sled Dog Inc., P.O. Box 76, Olney, MT 59927; (406) 881-3647, www.racetothesky.org.
An Adirondack setting for winter fun and games
The Saranac Winter Carnival, Jan. 31 to Feb. 9 in the historic upstate health resort area of Saranac Lake, will celebrate its 106th year with a Mardi Gras theme. But don't let that distract you from the winter games: inner-tube races down Mt. Pisgah, snowshoe races on Dewey Mountain, skating races, broomball, hockey, volleyball games in deep snow and softball games played in snowshoes. Also planned are concerts and fireworks.
Contact Saranac Lake Area Chamber of Commerce, 30 Main St., Saranac Lake, NY 12983; (800) 347-1992, www.saranaclake.com.
Polish up your French for a Francophone fete
At Festival du Voyageur, Feb. 14 to 23 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, the largest Francophone community west of the Great Lakes celebrates the biggest winter festival in Western Canada. Most events take place in the city's French Canadian quarter of St. Boniface. They include snow sculpting, sled dog races along the riverbank, exhibits explaining the life of the voyageur (trapper), tours of historic Ft. Gibraltar and live music.
Contact Festival du Voyageur, 768 Tache Ave., Winnipeg MB R2H 2C4; (204) 237-7692, www.festivalvoyageur.mb.ca.
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