EVENTS: Winter festivals in Reading, Hatfield, Lambertville and more, beckon you to venture out

A fire performance from a previous Reading Fire + Ice Fest.
A fire performance from a previous Reading Fire + Ice Fest. SUBMITTED PHOTO
The scene in Reading during the Fire + Ice Fest.
The scene in Reading during the Fire + Ice Fest. SUBMITTED PHOTO

Shake off cabin fever and keep seasonal affective disorder at bay.

Bundle up and discover the beauty of winter with any of these upcoming events across the region.

The Reading Fire + Ice Fest: returns to downtown Reading for its fourth year in 2018. Produced and organized by the Reading Downtown Improvement District, the festival takes place 5:30 to 10 p.m. Jan. 12 and 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Jan. 13 on the 500 block of Penn Street. There will be a variety of indoor and outdoor activities, including a chili cook-off, the Snowfall Ball, professional ice carving competitions, “fire performances,” hot glass demos at the GoggleWorks, live music, a pancake breakfast presented by Genesius Theatre, concession stands and an “Ice Bar.” Outdoor activities will be free, and the chili cook-off, Snowfall Ball and pancake breakfast will have nominal entry fees. Full details are at www.readingfireandicefest.com.

The Hatfield Township Fire and Ice Festival: makes a “splash” for charity 2 to 5 p.m. Jan. 20 at the Hatfield Aquatic Center, 2500 Chestnut St. A chili and soup cook-off will be available for both chefs and taste testers and will award prizes to the best in both the chili and soup categories. Registration is open at www.hatfieldrec.com. The festival offers food trucks, bonfires, games, music and “Shivering Slides” — the opportunity to climb the slides of the aquatic center and plunge into chilly waters. Shivering Slides challenges, such as “Best Costume” and “Largest Team,” add a competitive edge to the event. For more information call (215) 855-0900 or check out www.hatfieldtownship.org.

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The Lambertville New Hope Winterfest: features a week’s worth of ticketed and non-ticketed events Jan. 20-28 on the Pennsylvania and New Jersey sides of the Delaware River. Go to www.winterfestival.net and learn about family events​ like a winter bird walk, tours of historic New Hope and the Marshall House Museum in Lambertville, performances by Tucker’s Tales, the Mill Ballet and the Roxey Ballet, the Theatre Arts School of Dance & Performing Arts, and more; the Gallery and Antiques Crawl; ice sculptures; snowfolk art; the Soup-A-Thon; the Fire & Ice Ball; “Blues, BBQ & NFL Playoffs;” a Winter Fest Jamaican Jam; a Winter Festival Pub Crawl; Taste of Winter Fest; a concert with the John Hall Band at New Hope Winery; “Beef ‘n’ Brew;” a Karaoke Night; a Chili Cook-off and more.

Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest: continues daily through March 4 at 101 S. Columbus Blvd., Philadelphia. It features an Olympic-size skating rink overlooking the Delaware River, a ski chalet-style lodge and a winter garden. The waterfront destination also features an outdoor seating area with fire pits for roasting s’mores, warming cabins, a kids’ lodge with arcade games and more. Admission is free, with skate rentals available. More information is at www.delawareriverwaterfront.com/places/blue-cross-riverrink-winterfest.

Lititz Fire & Ice: features live ice sculpture carving at various locations downtown. More than 50 sculptures will be placed around Broad and Main streets. The Friday Night Block Party gets underway at 5 p.m. Feb. 16. A Chili Cook-off, Carnival and Vendor Fair starts at 11 a.m. Feb. 17 at the Warwick School District building, 301 W. Orange St. Visit www.lititzfireandice.com for more information.

Editor’s note: Check with the venues for any last-minute, weather-related schedule changes before venturing out.