Winterlude 2005

Saturday, February 19, 2005

What is Winterlude?

From the NCC's Winterlude web site:

"Every February, Canada's Capital Region is host to Winterlude, North America's greatest winter festival. Three fun-filled weekends of excitement and activity await the whole family! From spectacular ice carvings to an amazing playground made of snow, Winterlude is a great way to take in the best of our Canadian winter.


  • Winterlude was founded in 1979 by the National Capital Commission (NCC) as a means of celebrating Canada's unique northern climate and culture.
  • Last year, an estimated 616,000 fun-seekers took part in Winterlude activities. More than a third of those visits were by people from outside the Capital Region.
  • Every year, Winterlude attracts thousands of artists, athletes and visitors from across Canada and around the world.
  • The success of Winterlude rests on the support - both financial and in donated services - of the private sector, local collaborators, the media and the community.
  • In a 2004 survey, it was estimated that Winterlude related spending generated a total of $151.7 million of economic activity in Ontario and Quebec - $82.5 million within Canada's Capital Region."


Winterlude Kite Demonstration Event

This year, the school Ottawa (VL Kites) and the NCC has teamed up to organize a kite demonstration event for the closing week-end of the 2005 Winterlude. This is the world first large scale winter kite demonstration event for a very large number of non-kiter audiences, fully insured with $2,000,000 public liability insurance. Due to the large number of surrounding audiences, only instructors or riders with more than 3-year experiences were invited to ride in the event.

The event was fully supported by the kite manufacturers and the kite magazines. Many kite manufacturers and magazines have contacted, and in the end, BestKiteboarding ( sent 5 Tempest kites complete for the riders to use during the event (then to keep afterward), Loose ( sponsored 2 Patriot kites complete and SBC Kiteboard Magazine sent 50 copies to be distributed to the audiences. Many thanks to BestKiteboarding, Loose and SBC Kiteboard Magazine for recognizing the important of the Winterlude Kite Demonstration Event in the promotion of the sport and sponsoring the school as well as the riders.

Acknowledgement from NCC

Following are the photos and the report of the event.


Day 1 (Saturday February 19th, 2005)

The condition was not ideal; the wind was somewhat offshore and unstable. The demonstration area was also pretty icy (due to the recent rain & thaw) so snowboards were somewhat undesirable. However, thanks to the experienced team, the riders (mostly on skis) have done an admirable job and have really impressed the skaters. The riders (especially Andrew) has boosted some good airs and that has quite motivated the audiences. Given the non-ideal conditions, the first day of the event was a major success - I was not expecting the riders to be able to ride properly let alone boosting good airs. Many of the skaters, came from far away (few hours flight from Ottawa) and Northern US:

  • Some didn't know our sport exist!
  • Some has seen kitesurfing but not aware that one can do kitesnowboarding and kiteskiing in the winter
  • Some has seen kitesnowboarding and/or kiteskiing but not aware that one can do kitesurfing in the summer
  • Overall, most agree that kiting is the most exciting 4 season sport in northern climate


Arrived at the Kite Camp early in the morning Feb 19, 2005. Brent, Andrew and Jim in the background were unloading the equipment (Note that the trucks are on ice. Yes, the ice is thick enough to support trucks this time of the year in Canada)
The first Tempest kite got pumped up in front of the Kite Camp
More Tempest and Patriot kites got pumped up
Peter started connecting the lines to the first Tempest kite to try it out before the skaters showed up
Brent tried out the first Tempest kite while the first skaters started to show up
All the kites were set up and placed near the Kite Camp ready for the riders. The Kite Camp was ready for the audiences
The side of Kite Camp near the entrance (with the NCC logo and a Tempest kite flying in the back ground)
Jim, inside the Kite Camp, talking to the audiences
Andrew took another Tempest out for a ride before the crowd arrived
Andrew started getting lifted up
Skaters started arriving
The crowd arrived (note a Tempest kite was on the sky in the back ground)
Brent was out with a Patriot kite
Peter and Andrew with 2 Tempests
Hung was at the Kite Camp answering questions
The skaters were in front of the Kite Camp watching the demonstration
Taking picture in front of the Patriot and Tempest kites for souvenir
Arrived at Kite Camp early Sunday morning. The riders (Brent, Peter and Andrew) unloaded the equipment
2 Tempest kites got pumped up and ready for test runs (Note how good the snow coverage is!)
The early skaters studied the custom-made school kite
Jim and Andrew answered questions from the early crowd
The Kite Demo was on! The early skaters watched the kite demo from the Kite Camp
The Kite Demo was on! More skaters came in the Kite Camp area to take a closer look (Note the Blue Tempest high on the sky that has attracted many skaters)
More skaters were on the way to the Kite Camp!
Andrew tried to compete his Tempest kite against the Remax Hot Air Balloon
And Jim tried to do the same
An interested skater checked out one of the Patriot demo kites
The grand stage next to the Kite Demonstration area The show was on!
Ice sculpture at the grand stage
Andrew did a demo with a Tempest just next to the grand stage (the grand stage was in the background)
Andrew did a surface handle pass next to the grand stage
Barbara Underhill (the lady on the left), former World Skating Champion was on the grand stage
View of the Kite Demonstration area from the grand stage crowd
Jim answered questions back at the Kite Camp with a beautiful Patriot kite in the background
Peter did a demo run next to the grand stage
More skaters still came in the Kite Camp even the show was on at the grand stage!
Brent went for a demo run with the Patriot near the grand stage
Brent did a surface handle pass with the Patriot
Fannie from NCC came (the lady on the left hand side of the kite), congratulated the rider team and planned for the next year event! Many thanks to Fannie for making this happened!
The 2005 Winterlude Kite Demonstration Team. Hung, Jim, Brent, Andrew and Peter We will be back next year!