Silver Skate Festival

Feb 9-19, 2024 • Laurier Park

Edmonton's longest running winter festival!


Is there free parking?

Yes, but it is limited during the festival. We strongly recommend taking transit to Hawrelak Park.

Can I take transit to the festival?

Yes. There are ETS stops near the festival grounds, and a Free Park n’ Ride service loop from the University of Alberta transit centre.

Are the festival grounds accessible / wheelchair-friendly?

The trails around the festival grounds are made of packed snow, and the condition of the trails can vary greatly based on the weather.

Are dogs allowed?

Yes. As per the City of Edmonton bylaw, dogs are permitted on Hawrelak Park as long as they are on trail and on leash. Please note dogs are not allowed in indoor spaces, e.g. a festival tent. Also, keep in mind the weekends are very busy. Please factor that into your consideration when deciding to bring your dog down to the park.

When can I see snow sculptures?

The Waiward Snow Sculptures Garden will be up in Hawrelak Park from February 10th until the Spring melt.

What time is the fire sculpture burn?

The Fire Sculpture Burns take place each festival weekend (Sat & Sun) at 7:45pm.

What time do activities start?

Public skating begins daily at 11am. Festival programming begins at noon on weekends, and 4pm during the week. Visit our event listing.

What’s happening during the weekdays?

Check out the daily event listings.

What is there for kids to do at the festival?

We have curated winter experiences for kids of all ages. Be sure to check out our Family Fun Zone and Recreation Zone.

Are there speed skating events?

Yes. Our festival is rooted in Dutch winter traditions, which means lots of skating! We stage a range of competitive speed skating races, as well as family fun races.

Is there food on site?

Yes. There are a variety food trucks onsite and we offer our unique culinary events, Spirits on Ice and Battle of the Neighbourhoods. The Greenhouse on Hawrelak Lake will also be open from 11am-9pm during the festival.

What is the musical performance schedule?

Click here for our musical lineup.

Is there an entrance fee for the Main Entertainment tent?

There is no entrance fee for the majority of events happening in the Main tent.

Is there an entrance fee for the Winter Market?

No, it is free to attend.

Is public skating open?

Please monitor the City of Edmonton’s Facility Notifications page for updates on ice conditions.

Are there skate rentals on site?

Yes. Skate rentals are available in the William Hawrelak Park Pavilion on a first come, first served basis.

What to Bring

Here are a few things to bring that will help you enjoy our winter experiences and celebrate prairie winter life in comfort.

Plan for sun

The reflection of the sun can be very strong off the ice and snow. Sunglasses, sunscreen and lipbalm with SPF can help you mitigate those effects and keep you safe from UV exposure.

Stay hydrated!

Bring a reusable drinking bottle. You can refill at the drinking water fountain in the main skate pavilion next to Hawrelak Park Pond.

A bit of cash

Most of our merchants have gone cashless, but you don’t want to miss out on anything! We also gladly accept donations to help us grow and keep our festival free for all Edmontonians!

Power up

Don’t miss out capturing your winter experiences #SilverSkate Fully charge your electronic devices before you arrive as the cold can cause them to deplete at a faster rate.

Dress for Success!

In the winter timeEdmonton weather runs the gamut from cold to cold to downright bone-chilling cold—and can change by the moment. Before you take on the elements and engage in outdoor activities, check the forecast and dress for success!

Here's some advice to help you and your family cope with the cold and stay warm and comfy—from the top of your head to the tip of your toes—so you can make your best winter experience. 

  • A Toque is a Hat

    Up to 60% of your body's heat can escape through your head during cold weather. Even if you're not a fan of hat head, you'll need to cover up your noggin with a hat (or even a headband or helmet) if you want to stay warm at the festival.

    There are all kinds of different hats out there, usually made of fleece or wool. If you find hats itchy, choose one with a fleece liner, which will feel soft on your skin. If it's really cold out, try to cover as much of your skin as you can. Consider a balaclava, which will cover almost all of your head and neck, or wear a hat with a neck gaiter, which will cover your neck and some of your face.

  • Layer Up: When you're outside for the day, the weather will inevitably change. So will your activity level, as you participate in different activities. Dressing in layers makes it easy to edit what you're wearing to fit the situation—removing a layer while you're skating or adding one after sunset.

    Start with a wicking layer. Worn next to your body, it's usually a kind of long underwear in a synthetic fabric (but silk works too) that will wick the moisture away from your skin. Next, add an insulating layer, like a sweater, vest or pullover. This layer will help keep heat in and cold out. Fleece and wool are great materials for keeping you warm. Your top layer is called a protection layer, usually a shell and pants, which will block the wind and snow. It should also be a breathable material so your perspiration can evaporate—keeping you dry and comfy for your winter fun!

  • Give frostbite the finger

    When it's really cold, your hands can be vulnerable to frostbite. Look for gloves and mittens made of waterproof, but breathable, materials. Although mittens will keep you warmer, they won't work as well as gloves for some activities. Bring both, just in case.

  • Happy Feet

    If you're going to be on the move for a day of winter fun, make sure your feet will stay warm. If you have proper winter boots, you should be fine with just one pair of good-quality socks made of a wicking material. But if it's really, really cold, you’d be wise to add a second pair of socks, and maybe even toe warmers to stick in your boots (these also feel really nice).

Edmonton Arts CouncilFunded by the Government of CanadaAlberta Foundation for the ArtsAlberta Government
EdmontonWinter City EdmontonMammoetStephensons Rental ServicesSuperior Tent Rentals
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The mission of the Silver Skate Festival Society is to provide a free family-oriented winter celebration blending sport, recreation, arts and culture, showcasing various skating disciplines and promoting outdoor activities in Alberta.

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