City Loppet this weekend



United States
44° 56' 57.0804" N, 93° 18' 3.312" W

The largest urban cross-country ski festival in the lower 48 states will be held February 2nd and 3rd 2013 in Minneapolis. More than just great ski events – the Loppet is a winter festival for the entire family.  With over 13 events - including ski races, bike races, snow sculptures, orienteering and lots of games played on snow- the Loppet Festival is a great way to get out, enjoy and celebrate winter in Minnesota.

 This year the Loppet Festival returns to Uptown Minneapolis where Lake Street will be turned into a snow covered ski trail from Lake Calhoun to the Hennepin Avenue finish line.


 New Events for 2013:


·       Ski-O Loppet, contestants will navigate on skis using a map and compass - think of this as orienteering on skis.

·       Penn Cycle Fat Tire Loppet, A new type of race for fat tire bikes especially designed for snow. Winter bike enthusiasts will be racing up and down the same course that will be used for the ski race.

 The festival continues to offer many of the events that have become iconic celebration of Minnesota winter- the Southwest Journal Snow Sculpture Contest, the Subaru Skijoring National Championships – dogs and skiers racing together, and, of course, the Park Nicollet Luminary Loppet.


Saturday, February 2, 2013

 Loppet Saturday features a whole day of spectator- and family-friendly events and activities in Uptown.  Events include:


        – Southwest Journal Snow Sculpture Contest


o   Penguins, Polar Bears, skiers and art – all come to life from snow.

o   Sculpting all morning into the afternoon with Judging starting after the final touches are made at 1 PM- near the Tin Fish at Lake Calhoun

o   Viewing – all day, all weekend.


 - Loppet Kubb Tournament

o   Swedish lawn game on snow

o   In front of the Tin Fish on Lake Calhoun


 - Ski-O Loppet - Orienteering on skis

o   Skiers navigate with maps

o   Finish on Hennepin Avenue 


 – Penn Ice-Cycle Loppet

o   Circuit bike racing on a track of ice.

o   On the lagoon between Lake of the Isles and Lake Calhoun.

o   Preliminary heats starting at noon finals later in the day.


 – Chuck & Don’s Skijoring Loppet

o   Combines dog sledding and skiing.

o   Lake of the Isles – Uptown.

o   Watch both the running of the dogs and the Loppet ice bike race . . .

o   7K one-dog Subaru National Championship race, 5K and 2.5K recreational races.


 – Rossignol Junior Loppet

o   A race specially designed for skiers 19 and under.

o   New start on Lagoon between Lake of the Isles and Lake Calhoun, finish on Hennepin

o   Skiers race against others in their age classes: 18-19 (older juniors), 16-17 (J1), 12-15 (J2), 12-15 (J5), 10-11 (J2), 8-9 (J5), 7 and under (Youth Division).

o   1K (straight in) or 3K or 5K races around Lake of the Isles, all with a Hennepin Avenue Finish.


 – Minnesota Youth Ski League SuperCarnival

o   This free event includes food, fun and ski games for kids of all ages (limited equipment available for kids without skis).

o   Lagoon between Lake of the Isles and Lake Calhoun


 – Cook County Minne-Loppet

o   Free event for pre-registered kids ages 12 and under ($10 to register day-of).

o   New start on Lagoon between Lake of the Isles and Lake Calhoun, finish on Hennepin

o   Everyone is a winner – all kids receive a medal, a homemade cookie and hot cider.


 – Finn Sisu Sprints Finals

o   Two-minute heats in the heart of Uptown!

o   Junior (19 and under by age category), Paralympic and Open categories. Cash prizes for Paralympic and Open categories.

o   Only the best make it to the Finals: top eight men and women in the Open category, top four females and males in each Junior and Paralympic category.


 – Park Nicollet Luminary Loppet (note that registration is required for this event)

Once the sun goes down the ice Luminary’s are lit- and the fun begins! The biggest event of the Festival.

o   1,000+ ice luminaries, an even bigger ice pyramid, fire dancers, the Ice-Cropolis, the downtown skyline, and much more . . . 

o   Bon fires, hot cocoa stations and a Surly Brewing luminary stop with a complimentary 12oz pour for each adult Luminary Loppet participant.

o   Non-competitive – registration is open to snowshoers, walkers and skiers alike.

o   Hennepin – Lake of the Isles – Hennepin.


– Post-Luminary Party

o   Live music and dancing in Calhoun Square

o   Free for Loppet registrants, $10 otherwise


Vendor Village

o   Dozens of fitness and winter vendors in Calhoun Square

o   Free samples, fitness technology and advice, wax recommendations, shopping, and much more . . .

o   Friday: 5-9 p.m., Saturday: Noon – 7 p.m., Sunday: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.


Surly Beer Garden


Sunday Events

The REI 10K Tour





Family and friends ski together from Wirth Park to Uptown


Easier course – avoids hills and takes the direct route


·           The Hoigaard’s Classic Loppet


25 kilometers (15+ miles)


Classic skiers use the traditional style of cross country skiing


Fun Fact- Along with the Tri-Loppet and Trail Loppet, the City of Lakes Loppet is part of the Hoigaard’s Challenge.  Participate in all three events in the same year, compete for age group recognition and receive a commemorative pin and a chance to win a one-week stay at Bearskin Lodge on the Gunflint Trail.


 The winners will arrive between 10:50 and 10:25, but classic skiers will continue to finish throughout the day.



·           The City of Lakes Loppet


This race is “freestyle” – meaning that skiers can ski in any style – but most skiers will use the skate-style of skiing.


This is the most popular Loppet race, with over 1,200 participants expected. 


Fun Fact:  Past Loppet Champions include Minneapolis-based Olympians Carolyn Bramante and Caitlin Gregg as well as Kazakhstani Olympian Andrey Golovko.


The winners will arrive in Uptown between 11:25 and 12:15 p.m., depending upon course and weather conditions, but skiers will continue to finish throughout the day.


Chuck & Don’s 12k Skijoring Loppet - Two-Dog Subaru National Championship



Skijoring teams start and finish in the new stadium at Wirth and race two laps around the Hap & Judy Competition Loop as well as the Twin Lake Trail.


This is the second event in the Subaru Skijor USA National Championships.


 The Subaru National Championship races are qualifying events for the Mushing USA national team.  The best skijoring teams will qualify for skijoring World Cup races.


Penn Cycle Fat Tire Loppet (2:00 p.m. start)

o   25K race from Wirth Park to Uptown - on the ski trails!

o   See the crazy balloon tires maneuver down the ski trails - same course as the Loppet - only leaving out the first 8 kilometers.

o   Trivia: This is the one opportunity all winter for bikers to hit the ski trails.  The Fattest Skiers are the man and woman with the best combined time in the Loppet Freestyle and the Fat Tire Loppet. 



·       Comdey Sportz in Calhoun Square

 Fun Facts:



Over 600 Minneapolis Public Schools elementary school students learned to ski through Loppet Foundation youth programming this year.  Many of those students will be participating in the Cook County Minne(sota)-Loppet and the Rossignol Junior Loppet.



The Loppet Foundation is a 501(c) 3 non-profit organization.  Its mission is to promote and support the cross country skiing lifestyle in the Minneapolis area – especially among inner-city youth.


Look for the Anwatin and Nellie Stone Johnson Ski Teams. These teams are sponsored by the Loppet Foundation and feature some of the best up-and-coming skiers in the area.



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