Thaw won't stop Lake George winter fest

Jinna McHugh screams while trying to hang on

Jinna McHugh screams while trying to hang on inside the "Loading Zone" outhouse pulled by her co-workers at Adirondack Studios during the annual Outhouse Race for the Winter Carnival held in upstate Lake George Village. (Feb. 7, 2009) (Credit: AP File)

Helicopter rides have been canceled and the outhouse races have been moved to a parking lot, but the 51st annual Lake George Winter Carnival will go on, ice or no ice.

The southeastern Adirondack lake is usually frozen by now, and many of the annual festival's events take place on the ice. But the unusually warm winter has kept the lake from freezing.

The event got under way this weekend with a parade, outhouse races and chili cook-off. There will be rides in tethered hot-air balloons and a monster truck. But none in a helicopter, which usually lands on the ice. Ice for the ice castle had to be trucked into Lake George village.

Festivities such as fireworks and beach bonfires continue weekends through Feb. 26. Details at

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