CLOSE

The Green Bay Packers opened Ariens Hill for sledding on Dec. 21 Wochit

LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE

GREEN BAY -  Winter's here, and though it's cold and it's tempting to stay inside, there's still a lot to do in the Green Bay area.

Thursday marked the first day of meteorological winter in the Northern Hemisphere. So, that snowstorm on Dec. 13 and the arrival of the first subzero lows next week are merely the opening acts. 

Wisconsinites expect these conditions, of course. Heck, they don't call Lambeau Field the Frozen Tundra for nothing, right? But with three-plus months of snow and a harsh, arctic chill in the air, it's easy to fall victim to the winter doldrums.  

Good thing the Greater Green Bay area is chock-full of fun places to go and things to do during winter to keep spirits high.

Here's a rundown of activities, both indoor and outdoor, that are sure to help even those least fond of the cold to make the most of the winter season. 

Sledding, tubing and skating

There's nothing quite like zipping down a snow-covered hill or gliding across a skating rink. 

Sledding, tubing and skating are classic winter activities, and Green Bay has some pretty impressive options. The newest being the sledding hill and skating pond part of the Titletown District across from Lambeau Field. 

Titletown District's Ariens Hill is 46 feet tall and 300 feet long from start to finish. 

RELATED: Packers open Ariens Hill tubing run in Titletown District

At just under 17,000 square feet, the skating pond is slightly smaller than an Olympic-size hockey rink.

Hours for both the hill and pond are weekdays 3:30 to 9 p.m and 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on weekends. A single ride down the hill costs $3. Skating ticket prices range from $2 to $9, depending on the day.

On the city's east side, there's Triangle Sports Area.

Once a good snow base is established, the park offers downhill skiing, snowboarding and tubing. The tubing hill is 80 feet tall and has a convenient tube lift. There also are two 75-foot-tall skiing and snowboarding hills with rope tows. In addition, there are nearly 3½ miles of cross-country skiing trails. When it's time to warm up, visitors can defrost in the park's heated chalet. 

Green Bay Curling Club 

Take on one of winter's most unique sports at Green Bay Curling Club on Mike McCarthy Way. 

The club is in its 58th season and is host to several leagues. Those new to curling and wanting to join a non-competitive league can take advantage of scheduled Friday Fun Nights. The space is also available for private events. 

To celebrate the upcoming winter Olympics, the club will be hosting Learn to Curl sessions from 2 to 5 p.m. and 6 to 9 p.m., Feb. 23-25. The cost is $10 for a one-hour class. Those interested are asked to pre-register. The registration page will be online closer to the event dates. 

For more information go to curlgb.com and check out the club's calendar

Cross-country skiing

Escape the boredom by breaking out the skis.  

With nearly 1,600 acres, Brown County Reforestation Camp in Suamico is a favorite recreation area. 

The park is home to miles and miles of groomed cross-country ski trails, three miles of which are lit so visitors can ski their hearts out even after the sun goes down. 

The Barkhausen Waterfowl Preserve, and other city and county parks also have groomed ski trails.

U.S. Bank Eve

Need a place to celebrate New Year's Eve? Head to the YMCA. 

West-side, east-side and downtown Green Bay YMCA locations are hosting their annual U.S. Bank Eve celebrations. 

Each location has its own schedule and set of events, ranging from bouncy houses, bingo, face-painting, balloon drops and more. 

Horse-drawn wagon rides will be available from the Neville Public Museum and the Ferguson Family YMCA, and it all wraps up with fireworks in downtown Green Bay.

Visit greenbayymca.org for more information. 

Winterfest on Broadway

Winterfest is returning to Broadway for the first time since 2014. 

Details are still being finalized, but the festival is expected to be an indoor and outdoor winter extravaganza. 

Small businesses will have sales and other specials, while the street outside will be lined with entertainment like snow sculpting, a scavenger hunt, and food vendors. 

Winterfest is 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Jan. 27. 

New Leaf market 

The New Leaf Winter Farmers Market presented by Bellin Health might be an indoor event, but it's plenty adventurous. 

The market, held in Exhibit Hall C at the KI Convention Center in downtown Green Bay, showcases 80 vendors offering local meat, cheese, bakery, vegetables, coffee, crafts and more. 

This year's market dates are Jan. 13, 20, Feb. 3, 10, 24 and March 3.  

Ice fishing 

You don't have to look far for ideal spots to ice fish. 

The Fox River is the perfect stage with several entry points including Voyageur Park in De Pere. 

The bay of Green Bay is also a popular destination. The bay is known as a world-class fishery with perch, walleye, whitefish and northern pike. 

Nature walks, skiing and snowshoeing

Those looking to get some good exercise, observe wildlife and enjoy some beautiful views, should head to Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary

The 600-acre sanctuary offers prime landscape for nature walks. During winter, though, there are some especially fun and festive events like a public snowshoe hike and ski and tea days. 

Snowshoe hikes are scheduled for 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Jan. 6.

The ski and tea events, in which visitors join a naturalist for about an hour turn on the ski trail and then warm up with a hot beverage afterward, are taking place at 2 p.m. Jan. 2, 4, 23 and 24. 

Both events cost $5 and require registration. For more details visit baybeachwildlife.com or call (920) 391-3671.

Water parks

Those looking to escape the cold without staying home can get an early splash of summer by booking a stay at Green Bay hotels with water parks. 

Tundra Lodge on Lombardi Avenue features a 30,000-square-foot indoor aquatic playground with pools, slides, a lazy river and a jacuzzi. 

Also on the city's west side is Comfort Suites, which has a "splash" water park. The park features one pool for children, with a slide and play area, another pool for adults, as well as a calming whirlpool. 

Museums

Museums are also great places to kick it to the cold. 

The Children's Museum of Green Bay is filled with exhibits on science, art and more, allowing children to learn hands-on in a fun, welcoming, colorful environment. 

The Neville Public Museum is another good bet for some unique fun. The museum, too, focuses on science, art and history with exhibits spanning generations.

LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE
Read or Share this story: http://gbpg.net/2BuyQZT