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6 reasons to join this year's Bear Lake Monster Winterfest

The post-holiday gloom is real — the lights and decorations come down, the jolly spirit dissipates and January seems to drag on forever. But in northern Utah, the fun is only beginning.

Every year Bear Lake has a smashing Winterfest full of activities to make the snowy season a something you’ll look forward to. From the games, events, prizes and more, there are many reasons to check out the Bear Lake Monster Winterfest. Here are a few.


Each activity and event of the two-day long Winterfest offers prizes in one form or another. Between door prizes and a raffle, attendees will enjoy being showered with opportunities to win something. What’s more, you can enter your chili recipe into the Monster Chili Cook-off to win prizes and prestige. Whether you dress up in the costume contest or try your hand at winning the biggest cisco fish award, there’s plenty to compete in for fabulous prizes at 2020’s Winterfest.

Bragging rights

Each year, the bravest of the brave take the Monster Plunge in silly costumes or even wetsuits. You’ll need some warm support when you come out of the water, but it’s all to show your fearlessness of any legendary monster or even cold water, right? The winter waters of Bear Lake’s Marina may be frigid, but it’s all for a good cause.

Jumper entries cost $30 (if you buy in advance), but you’ll have proof of your daring act with a Monster Plunge sweater as long as you pre-register online, as sweaters are limited. Find out more about plunge registration here. Take the plunge and get your sweater so everyone will know that you braved the icy waters of the Bear Lake Monster Plunge.

Helping others

Common Ground Outdoor Adventures organization provides outdoor recreation for adults and youth with disabilities, and it is the recipient of donations from the Monster Plunge and other portions of 2020 Bear Lake Monster Winterfest. As for the Winterfest itself, most events occur at the Bear Lake State Park Marina, which usually has an admission fee. This fee will be waived in lieu of a donation to the common ground, a valuable charity to countless people.

If you have a booth at the Monster Indoor & Outdoor Expo, you can donate an item to the raffle for a discount of $10. So no matter the activities you choose to attend at the Winterfest, there’s going to be a chance to pay it forward and help someone else. Help disabled persons gain valuable recreation opportunities by participating in the 2020 Bear Lake Monster Winterfest variety of events and activities.

Good fishing

One of the most anticipated Bear Lake Monster Winterfest events is the cisco fishing. There are several opportunities to fish throughout the event, provided you have a fishing license, but the best time to catch cisco fish is at sunrise. At dawn, novice and experienced fishers alike will join on the East side of Bear Lake at Cisco Beach for the Monster Cisco Disco.

State Park fees apply, but the small cost pays off with a net full of cisco fish. The best part? If you have a fish you think worthy of the Cisco Fish Tournament, you can enter your big little fish to win a prize in a variety of categories. Entries must be brought to the Marina between 11 a.m.-12 p.m., with winners announced at noon.

Warming food

From the kickoff party on, hot beverages and warming foods will be available to all who attend the Winterfest event. Start out your Winterfest experience the right way by attending the Kickoff party at the Sunrise Resort on Friday, Jan. 24. Taking place at 929 N Harbor Village East Drive, Garden City Utah, attendees will enjoy a full hot chocolate bar with doughnuts.

The chili cook-off may have its designated judges, but the public attendees will also have plenty of opportunities to taste the best chili around Bear Lake. Judging takes place at noon, but attendees will be able to taste the goods after judging at 12:30 p.m.

Free fun

Whether you’re watching the craziness of the Monster Plunge or a free movie at the kickoff party, there’s plenty to do and see that doesn’t cost money. Family-friendly fun can be hard to come by, especially in the winter and at a reasonable price, but the Bear Lake Monster Winterfest does not disappoint.

Come take in the beauty of Bear Lake in the winter while enjoying time-old traditions, good food and a friendly community atmosphere Jan. 24-26. Find more details on the event homepage at