Chestnut Mountain, the lower Midwest's largest ski resort, is hosting the Heartland's first winter carnival at a ski resort the weekend of Feb. 26-27. There will be games, competitions, and live music for the whole family.

There will be a snow sculpture contest and a Big Nut Open snowboard competition Saturday followed by a torch light parade that evening and a fireworks display over the Mississippi River. Live music provided by Wisconsin's Mighty Short Bus will be taking place in the Three Gables Lounge from 9 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. The Silly Slalom takes place on Sunday afternoon. There will be a slew of carnival games and food available both days, and Jo Jo The Clown will be hanging around the slopes both days from 12-3 p.m.

The Big Nut Open is a Super Park Slopestyle event and Rail Garden Rail Jam for both non-open and open classes. Entry fee is $15 for one Non-Open event and $20 for both. Open Class fee is $20 for a single event or $25 for both. Open Class will be competing for cash prizes with at least a minimum prize of $500 for the men's open class.

The last Chestnut Snowshoe hike and lunch takes place on Sunday, Feb. 27. The cost is $49 for adults and $25 for kids. It includes a guided hike, snowshoe rentals and lunch voucher. Advance registration is required by calling the number listed below.

Chestnut has a couple of weekend lift and lodging packages available all winter long. The No Frills, Just Thrills Package, good for Friday and Saturday night lodging, starts from $115 per person, per night based on double occupancy. It includes a two-day lift ticket. The all-inclusive Weekend Ski Package starts from $335 per person, based on double occupancy. It includes two nights lodging, two two-day lift tickets, breakfast and lunch both days, and dinner Saturday night.

More information 815-776-9425