All was quiet at the Nordic Heritage Center on Friday at noontime, but it was about to get busy. Back for it’s ninth year…is the Nordic Trail festival.
“There’s smiles on everybody’s faces, we put on a good show, and we make everybody feel special,” said chief of competition Chad McPherson.
The weekend festival combines fitness and fun – and takes place at one of Presque Isle’s most famed facilities.
“People around the state and through New Brunswick and Quebec know about the NHC mountain bike trails – as do trail runners so its an opportunity for us to get together and show that off – summer’s so fleeting and special in Northern Maine and so to put together a weekend that highlights the best of that..I think is really motivating for people,” said director Michael Smith.
There’s mountain bike and running races – a biathlon event that combines the two..and plenty more. Live music is back for a second year. You’ll find plenty to eat — and for the kids? Bouncy houses and face painting. While there is competition – it’s the comradery that matters most.
“The people are the best part, without a doubt..I like watching the faces, the kids that play in the different bouncy tents and drag wheelies and whatever to keep them busy, you know, it’s the kids that make this place special,” said team leader Tom Chasse.
This is the only weekend they allow people to camp at the heritage center, and the event is raising money for the Maine Adaptive program the center will soon host — they want to buy equipment so that physically disabled people will be able to participate in activities like skiing in the wintertime.
“We want them all to be able to use the facility..it’s important for them and it’s important for us to have everyone use such a wonderful facility,” said McPherson.