Minneapolis, MN — Big changes are coming to the annual City of Lakes Loppet Festival! Now in its 17th installment, the multi-day winter festival has become a Minneapolis staple for celebrating the wonder, adventure, and fun of the winter season in Minnesota.
Now with the completion of The Trailhead, the Loppet Foundation’s long-awaited headquarters, most of this year’s City of Lakes Loppet Winter Festival events will be centered in Theodore Wirth Regional Park on the border between North Minneapolis and Golden Valley. Over a decade in the making, The Trailhead building is the latest of upgrades to Wirth Park in partnership between the Loppet Foundation and Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board.
Reversing the Course
Beginning with the 2019 festival, all point-to-point events will begin on the Chain of Lakes in Uptown and finish at The Trailhead. “We have been waiting to do this for years,” says Isaac Kasper, the Loppet’s Chief of Course. “Starting on the lakes is perfect – it gives the skiers and bikers time to spread out before hitting the narrower and hillier trails in Wirth Park.”
Events like the Junior Loppet and Minne-Loppet will also be much improved for racers in this scenario. Rather than skiing on the flat and windy Bde Maka Ska, athletes will enjoy skiing on more varied and sheltered trails in Theodore Wirth Park – complete with snowmaking infrastructure that will guarantee a great event, no matter the weather.
The Big Tent and Vendor Village will also be relocating at The Trailhead – meaning that participants and spectators alike will be able to better enjoy all that the festival has to offer in a centralized location. “We are really looking forward to focusing all of the excitement of Loppet weekend at our new home in Wirth Park,” said the Loppet Foundation’s executive director, John Munger. “Between The Trailhead, our new and expanded snowmaking, and an exciting new course, we are expecting 2019 to be our biggest year ever!”
For more information, and to register for festival events, visit the Loppet Winter Festival website.