Scenes from the 2015 City of Lakes Loppet

The first turn coming out of the starting line was the hardest for several of the dog sled racers at the Loppet Winter Festival (Jan.30-Feb. 1), though some powered through just fine. Credit: Photo by Lou Fine

(Photo slideshow by Lou Fine // Murphy News Service) 

Thousands took part in the 13th annual City of Lakes Loppet Ski Festival at Theodore Wirth Park and the Chain of Lakes area Jan. 30–Feb. 1. 

The festival featured cross-country ski races, snowshoeing, ice-bike racing, a dog sled race and the Comcast Luminary Loppet around Lake of the Isles, among other activities. The Southwest Journal sponsored the Snow Sculpture Contest on Lake Calhoun.

Despite the lack of snow, the festival participants and spectators relished the chance to celebrate winter sports.