Skip to content

City's six-week Hello Winter festival brings fun activities to celebrate the season

By spreading event out and re-creating classic Winterfest favourites, 'we are able to safely offer experiences that celebrate what winter has to offer in our city,' says official
File photo. Kevin Lamb for BarrieToday

For the second year in a row, the city presents Hello Winter – six weeks of fun, engaging and safe activities to help residents and visitors enjoy Barrie’s winter, Feb. 5 to March 20. 

Hello Winter takes place in lieu of Winterfest – a Barrie tradition and one of Ontario’s premier winter festivals. Hello Winter 2022 includes some popular programming from Winterfest, re-imagined.

“This year, Hello Winter’s theme focuses on light, to brighten the cold season and inspire a sense of hope,” says Steve Lee-Young, manager of recreation programs. “By spreading the event out over February and March and re-creating classic Winterfest favourites, we are able to safely offer experiences that celebrate what winter has to offer in our city.”

Along the theme of light, Hello Winter will feature temporary light-based art installations, including digital art projected in downtown public spaces, (displayed Feb. 18 to March 20) and an interactive installation called Chimes (displayed Feb. 20 to March 20), which will fill Meridian Place with a symphony of sound and light.

Additional Hello Winter activity highlights include:

  • Ice sculptures celebrating winter’s natural beauty, displayed at Meridian Place and Heritage Park Feb. 5 and 6;
  • A skating party with a live DJ and light show at Circle at the Centre on the evening of Feb. 11;
  • An enchanted winter trail through Sunnidale Park from Feb. 5 to 13;
  • An online ‘Community Sculpture Challenge’, where residents are invited to build creative creations and submit pictures to an online map, opening Feb. 18;
  • A Family Day adventure featuring a variety of outdoor activities at the Barrie Community Sports Complex on Feb. 21.

Throughout Hello Winter, the City will also activate several community parks throughout Barrie with engaging nature-based, pop-up programming, called ‘Nature in Winter’. For additional recreational opportunities throughout the winter, the City's trails and outdoor rinks are also open.

Specific activity details – including times and registration requirements – will be posted to as they are announced. Hello Winter is funded in part by the Government of Ontario through the 2021 Reconnect Festival & Event Program.

When taking part in activities or using any amenities, the City reminds participants to follow all posted health and safety guidelines, and the regulations from the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit and the Province of Ontario

About Chimes interactive art installation

Chimes was created and executed by Collectif Blackbox, a coproduction of Quartier des Spectacles Partnership and MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE, creation Fete des Lumieres of Lyon (2017).