The Fur Rondy Festival is a 77 year tradition. It is a significant part of the history and tradition of Anchorage. In the mid 1930's, Anchorage was just a small town of about 3,000 people.Vern Johnson, the father of the Fur Rendezvous, was a likeable, outgoing Anchorage citizen with a keen understanding of social conditions. He and his friends decided to establish a 3-day Festival to coincide with the time that the miners and trappers came to town with their winter's yield. It began as a three-day sports tournament on February 15, 16 and 17, 1935 and featured skiing, hockey, basketball, boxing and a children's sled dog race down Fourth Avenue. Nearly the entire population of Anchorage turned out for the bonfire and torchlight parade.
Since then, the Fur Rendezvous has earned national and international notoriety, and visitors from throughout the world descend on Anchorage every February. Fur Rendezvous remains a highly anticipated time of year.
This is the first year we've been and participated. We LOVED it! We did and saw many things.
1. SLED DOG RACE
The World Championship Sled Dog Race debuted in 1946 and has become the cornerstone event of the Festival bringing teams of sled dogs and mushers to Anchorage from across Alaska and all over the world. The World Championship Dog Weight Pull began in 1967 as a bet between two dog owners to see whose animal could pull the most weight. Four decades later, dog owners are still competing against each other for the cash, notoriety and the illustrious World Champion title for the event.To kick off the beginning of the Iditarod, the mushers and dogs race around Anchorage. The race really starts in Willow, AK. What is the Iditarod? It is an annual 975 mile sled dog race run in early March from Willow to Nome. Mushers and a team of 12-16 dogs, of which at least 6 must be on the towline at the finish line, cover the distance in 9–15 days. The Iditarod began in 1973 as an event to test the best sled dog mushers and teams but evolved into today's highly competitive race. The current fastest winning time record was set in 2011 by John Baker with a time of 8 days, 19 hours, 46 minutes, and 39 seconds.
Everyone cheered as they came by.
We did not go on the rides. It was snowy and windy. Doesn't seem fun to twirl around on a ride when it's already freezing out.
3. FUR AUCTION
Umm, no thank you. I think this was a fox, with legs and tail still in tact.
At least they're warm. We saw another guy with a fox head as a hat.
True Alaskans, or maybe just wanna-be-s. My snow pants, jacket, and boots keep me plenty warm. It looks pretty cool though.
The "blanket" is made from walrus and breaded seal, at least that's what the guy told me. If you're native Alaskan you can kill any animal. They do use everything for something, like this.
So fun. I wish I could've done it too. I'm glad the girls got a chance.
In case you can't tell, the girls both loved it.
You can't see me, but it's just a picture to see the tons of people. This just shows a glimpse of it. We didn't even get a picture of us w/ reindeers behind us, but trust me there were. There was one reindeer slacking behind and came right past us.
After the race. We went with a St. Patrick's day theme-clover socks, green shirts, necklaces, and leprechaun silly hats.
6. SNOW SCULPTURES
Sydney behind a see-through sculpture.
Kids and their friend, Ila in a ice car.
Me and Levi on part of a train. He's all about trains and planes right now.
All of us in front of the train car.
When Jordyn saw the mascot, the sea wolf, she said, "I'm gonna give the monster a hug."
Between the periods the girls were thrown a Sea Wolf T-shirt and each got a water bottle and puck. I love having kids, they get all the cool stuff. If Jeff and I had been to the game alone, they wouldn't have thrown us that stuff.
Love these guys! Yummy. One's hot the other is cute.