(Winter) Love is in the Air

This year, have a love affair with winter since it’s here to stay anyways!

We all know of the perils of winter on the Island – the dreaded wind-chill feels and ‘slippy’ roads are likely to be mentioned in passing with whomever you meet these days. But don’t be surprised if you come across some talk of winter’s charms as well. There is a movement a-foot, or should I say a-boot, towards a celebration and appreciation of these long-languished months and it is called, quite fittingly, Winter Love.

Winter Love Pro Tips

Dress appropriately! Wool socks, thermal underwear and shirt, snow pants, winter jacket, hat, scarf, and mitts are all a must. Invest in or make your own balaclava if you want to minimize Jack Frost’s nipping at your nose.

Be open-minded. Love doesn’t usually come knocking at the door, sometimes you’ve got to get out of your comfort zone to meet that perfect match and the same stands true for winter. Keep an open mind, try new things and embrace the fearless child in you – the one that dove into snowbanks and skated ice rinks until long after the toes had no feeling.

Practice hygge. Hygge is a Danish word that loosely translates to ‘creating well-being, connection and warmth.’ It’s a state of mind and a way of being that you can interpret as you wish, though snuggling up with a comfy blanket, fireside drinks and lazy pancake mornings are highly recommended.

An initiative of Fusion Charlottetown, Winter Love takes place throughout the month of February and is all about celebrating the season. This time of year is a chance to see everything in a whole new light, and not just because there is, technically, less light. The winter season brings a flurry of unique ways to be active and social – and to add to any experience by pairing it with the perfect comfort food.

The City of Charlottetown’s Parks and Recreation Department offers some great options for getting winter active. For starters, you can walk on the City’s trails as they are groomed for winter use. The boardwalk from Victoria Park to the Friendly Pharmacy is open year-round. There is something starkly beautiful about looking out into the Hillsborough River at the jagged, snow covered ice, a reminder that nature is boss, if you need one. End your walk (or start it!) with a warm beverage and a satiating snack at any of the City’s cozy and unique cafes.

submitted photos: Discover Charlottetown Inc.

You can go snowshoeing in Victoria Park or on the Confederation Trail (within City limits), and for a change of scenery try out the Beach Grove trails. Don’t have your own snowshoes? No problem, sign out a pair at the Victoria Park clubhouse on Sundays (until March 5th) at 2:00pm and join a crew of fellow winter-lovers for a hike. Bring your thermos and fill it up with some hot chocolate available on site for free.

Once you’ve had your fill of frolicking in the elements it’s time to go inside and warm up an element of a different kind; the stove! Winter is the best time for roasting, stewing, and slow-cooking foods to get that long-drawn out flavor. It just so happens that many locally grown and seasonally-available foods are best prepared in these leisurely manners, another reason to sign up for a winter CSA if you haven’t already or visit your local farmers’ market. Try your hand at making fresh bread and a seasoned butter to go with a hearty chili, likely to be deserving of its place in the comfort food category. Want something a bit lighter? Treat yourself to a creamy roasted butternut squash soup with a kale salad for lunch after a morning spent outdoors.

submitted photos: Discover Charlottetown Inc.

Potlucking is, arguably, the best way to stay social during the winter months when we might be tempted to batten down the hatches and hibernate until patio weather returns. Round up a group of foodie friends and host a potluck and board game night. If you fancy a classier affair, why not try your hand at making a warm spiced wine and invite your friends to bring along their favourite cheese or chocolate.

Winter is also a great time to head out for dinner without having to worry about vying with tourists for a window seat. Our Island chefs don’t miss a beat when it comes to serving up heartwarming, delicious fare that features local meat, dairy, and produce. If you’re in Charlottetown, you’ll want to check out Downtown Charlottetown Inc.’s WinterDine festival, taking place the last weekend of January and the first two weekends of February.

submitted photos: Discover Charlottetown Inc.

Let’s not forget hot cocoa, fuzzy blankets, good books, wood-stoves, snow-days, and, of course, those quintessential storm chips. A love of all things winter isn’t that hard to fathom when you look on the bright (and delicious) side of the darkest days of the year.

Winter Love Highlights


4: Disco Skating Party at Founder’s Hall
10-11: Fire N’ Ice at Fairholm Inn
18: Dark in the Park at Victoria Park

For a full calendar of events, visit fusioncharlottetown.com/winterlovepei