SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Syracuse Winterfest kicked off this weekend, Sunday, February 19 at the Syracuse Inner Harbor to support Helping Hounds Dog Rescue with a special race involving dogsleds.

This year’s top event, the human dogsled race, was brought back by popular demand with three different age range categories and with all proceeds benefitting the dog rescue organization.

COR Development, along with other sponsors like Limp Lizard, Meier’s Creek Brewing Company at Iron PierC&S Companies, QPK Design, and Blueberries & Lace all helped bring back the festival for the third year, supporting Helping Hounds Dog Rescue at the Syracuse Inner Harbor.

The annual celebration started 38 years ago in 1985 and has since expanded into the snow weekend event it is now.

“Every year COR’s Winterfest event at the Syracuse Inner Harbor has been a tremendous success. Proceeds from this event will support Helping Hounds Dog Rescue and its mission ‘to providing a compassionate approach to dog rescue by matching homeless dogs from overcrowded shelter systems with a loving home.’ COR is excited to partner once again with Helping Hounds, and the Syracuse Winterfest committee, to host the human dogsled races benefiting Helping Hounds Dog Rescue at Iron Pier. We’d like to thank the public for their generosity, and our local partners for helping make this event such a success, and we welcome all to sign up and join the fun!” 

Merissa Lynch, Marketing Manager for COR Development.

Hosted outside the Iron Pier building in Syracuse, the event included food trucks, ice carving demonstrations presented by C&S Companies, Solo Stove fire pits and s’mores, family art classes with Right Mind Syracuse, craft beers and raffles with Meier’s Creek Brewing Company, and live music with DJ Skip Clark with 92.1 The Wolf.

The human dogsled race was split into three categories with ages 13 and under, ages 14-18, and adults. Prizes were awarded to the three fastest teams and the teams who raised the most funds for charity.

Not only were prizes awarded to winners of the human dogsled competition but also a trophy to the winner of the “Best Team Spirit / Decorated Sled” contest judged by the Syracuse Crunch.

Dogs held for adoption from Helping Hounds were also at the event and visitors and competition attendees got to pet and play with the animals.