search

Top 3 Pages

menu

Steamboat Winter Carnival

February 9 - 13, 2022

For 108 years the Winter Carnival has celebrated Steamboat’s Western heritage and long-standing tradition of winter sports. This year, the spirit of the Winter Carnival will continue to embrace that history while supporting Steamboat’s Winter Sports Club with adjusted celebrations to keep athletes and community members safe.

Due to current local and state restrictions, there will be no Street Events, Night Extravaganza, or spectator events this year. The carnival will take place with outdoor activities for local youth to participate in and traditional experiences around town such as the soda pop slalom, snow sculptures, and the recognition of Winter Carnival Royalty and Grand Marshals. Athletes will also make numerous descents in smaller groups down the darkened backside of Howelsen Hill throughout the evenings of the Carnival to enjoy the experience and magic of skiing with flares. Fireworks will light up the sky on Saturday night and spectators can watch the display from home or lodging property, as no gathering at the blast will be permitted.

We encourage all locals and visitors to keep the Winter Carnival tradition alive by playing outside and experiencing the winter wonderland of Steamboat Springs!

Fireworks Display at the annual Steamboat Springs Winter Carnival

Steamboat Springs Winter Carnival Night Extravaganza

About the Winter Carnival

Winter Carnival was started by the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club (SSWSC) as a way to help residents cope with cabin fever during the height of the Colorado winter season.

The event continues to this day as a way to celebrate winter; as a reason for neighbors to gather; and as an opportunity for everyone to experience a piece of Ski Town USA® history and tradition.

2021 Schedule of Events

Due to current local and state restrictions, there will be no Street Events, Night Extravaganza, Parade or spectator events this year. Please continue to check back for additional details on the 2021 event.

Wednesday, February 3

12 PM  - Olympic Heritage Tour Presented by the Tread of Pioneers Museum: Tours led by the USA’s only six-time winter Olympian Todd Lodwick explore Steamboat’s Olympic heritage and the history of the SSWSC, Winter Carnival, Howelsen Hill, and ski jumping. Social distancing and facemasks required. First come, first served. Location: Howelsen Hill Lodge, 845 Howelsen Parkway


Thursday, February 4

4 PM - Snow Sculpture Judging presented by Steamboat Creates: Stroll down Lincoln to view hand-carved snow sculptures created by locals using this year's theme "Happy Outside". Judging will take place at 4 pm and winners will be highlighted with ribbons all weekend long. For more info, contact Steamboat Creates at (970) 879-9008. Location: Lincoln Avenue, Downtown Steamboat Springs


Friday, February 5

10 AM - 2 PM - Christy Sports Soda Pop Slalom: This is fun race is open to any skier or snowboarder 11 and under or U10 program & below (U12 athletes are not eligible). Pre-registration is required online by February 1st. Button or Buff, as well as social distancing and facemasks will be required. Location: Steamboat Ski Resort, Mt. Werner, Stampede Run

11 AM - 5 PM  Tour Winter Carnival Exhibits: The Tread of Pioneers Museum invites locals and guests alike to take a walk through history, and see the most memorable items from over a century of Winter Carnivals. Take a look at the original light suit worn by the very first Lighted Man, the full collection of Winter Carnival buttons, and photos of the historic event that has brought the community together for 108 years. Location: Tread of Pioneers Museum, 800 Oak Street

2:30 - 4 PM Powder Tools Mid-Winter Terrain Park Jam Session: Located at the Howelsen Hill Terrain Park, this event is open to the public. Pre-registration is required at  www.WinterCarnivalSteamboat.com. A waiver must be signed or already be on file with the SSWSC in order to participate. Button or Buff, as well as social distancing and facemasks will be required. Location: Howelsen Hill Lodge, 845 Howelsen Parkway.


Saturday, February 6

11 AM - 5 PM  Tour Winter Carnival Exhibits: The Tread of Pioneers Museum invites locals and guests alike to take a walk through history, and see the most memorable items from over a century of Winter Carnivals. Take a look at the original light suit worn by the very first Lighted Man, the full collection of Winter Carnival buttons, and photos of the historic event that has brought the community together for 108 years. Location: Tread of Pioneers Museum, 800 Oak Street

12 - 8 PM World Pro Ski Tour: The World Pro Ski Tour, a nationwide tour of events featuring the popular “dual” format of alpine ski racing, is coming to Howelsen Hill! In a side-by-side race format, TV viewers will be able to consume the most exciting alpine ski racing of the season. While there will be no spectators, the event will be live-streamed allowing people to enjoy the event safely in their homes.

Evening - View from Home Fireworks Show presented by Yampa Valley Bank: End the night with a stunning fireworks display over Howelsen Hill. Spectators are encouraged to watch the show from the comfort of their home or lodging property. Howelsen Hill Parkway will be closed.


Sunday, February 7

10 AM - 4 PM Ski Free Sunday at Howelsen Hill: Make a two-hour time slot reservation for skiing and riding at Howelsen Hill: North America’s Oldest Operating Ski Area and Steamboat’s original ski area. What better way to celebrate the 108th Winter Carnival’s theme of “Happy Outside” and bring a smile to your face than carving down 440 vertical feet on the face, riding the boardwalk carpet for easy-access beginner terrain, or cruising for miles on the Nordic trails for cross-country skiing, skate skiing, fat biking, and snowshoeing. Reserve your spot nowLocation: Howelsen Hill Lodge, 845 Howelsen Parkway.

Event Ticketing

Memorabilia will be available for purchase, including Winter Carnival buffs and posters created by local artist Sarah Juschka. Winter Carnival buttons will not be used for entry this year and will be limited to a number of 500 ‘collectors’ buttons, designed by one of Steamboat’s talented youth artists in the annual art competition. This year's buffs and buttons will follow tradition by giving the wearer free skiing at Howelsen Hill when shown to the ticket office between February 3 - 6. 

Howelsen Hill Ski Area will close early at 6 pm on Thursday and Friday, February 4 & 5, for course preparation for the World Pro Ski Tour on The Face. The ski area will see normal operating hours (10 am - 4 pm) on Saturday, Feb 6, but skiers and riders should understand that the Poma lift and The Face will be closed the entire day for the event.

Winter Carnival Video Playlist

View our Winter Carnival video playlist below for an inside look at the amazing events that take place during the carnival, including an interview with Leif Howelsen, son of Carl Howelsen (founder of the Steamboat Springs Winter Carnival), that shows us the history and tradition behind this wonderful event.