McCall Cancels Mardi Gras Parade, Winter Carnival Stays
It's an event like no other in the country. Visitors describe it as a cross between New Orleans and Salt Lake City. What was attempting to explain the annual Mardi Gras Parade in McCall that captures the flavor of the Mardi Gras in between snow-capped mountains? The event is so popular that KTVB has annually broadcast the Mardi Gras Parade, complete with our beloved meteorologist Larry Gebert covered in Mardi Gras Beads.
However, KTVB is reporting that the Mardi Gras Parade has been canceled, although the famous winter carnival will continue as planned. McCall Area Chamber spokesperson McKenzie Kraemer told KTVB that public health concerns and the emerging Omicron variant caused organizers to cancel this year's parade.
A look at the ice sculptures. The story continues after photos.
Can You Help Us Solve The Mystery Of These 15 McCall Winter Carnival Snow Sculptures?
The town of McCall has a population of 3,000 but draws over 60,000 visitors during the Winter Carnival. Ice sculptures decorate roadside restaurants and hotels. The McCall Chamber provided a history of the event in a release:
"The inspiration for the Winter Carnival dates back to 1924 when McCall created the Payette Lake Sports Carnival, named after the large, picturesque, glacier-carved, sandy-beached body of water that provides much of McCall's summer and fall allure. The Sports Carnival existed for several years before becoming an ice-breakup contest, which ended when gambling became illegal in 1941."
"In 1965, the community rallied to bring back a winter festival to help promote the area's pristine skiing. This effort led to the first annual McCall Winter Carnival at Brundage Mountain Resort, which Ski Magazine has claimed is home to "the best powder in North America." The two-day event included slalom racing, cross-country skiing, ski jumping, and snowshoe and snowcat races."
You can find out more about the magic of McCall by clicking this link here.
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