It began as a way to scout talent for the USA Luge Olympic team.

Since its modest beginning, Winterfest has taken on a life of its own at Blue Mountain Ski Resort.

The fourth annual event will be held from noon to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the resort just outside of Palmerton.

Those who attend will see ice carvings, dog sledding, tubing, skiing, torch parades, and fireworks, according to Barbara Green, owner.

Green said interest in the event has grown over the years.

"How it came about is we were approached by the USA Luge Olympic team whether we would be a site to go ahead and have them look for talent," Green said. "As part of that, we were putting together other attractions that we could bring more people so that they could get interested in doing Luge, and to get people to go up to (the luge track at) Lake Placid up in New York."

Green said watching the fireworks as they reflect off the white snow is a particularly special sight to behold.

"The motivation is to get people to come out and experience the outdoors during the winter," she said. "It's for those people who like to get outside and have cabin fever."

Winterfest's schedule of events is as follows:

Ÿ Ice Works – Three ice carvers will carve from noon until 3 p.m. A fourth carver will carve from 3-7 p.m. Carving will be held at both the Summit and Valley Lodges.

Ÿ The Masters of the Chain Saw will arrive at noon. Carving will be held at both the Summit and Valley Lodges.

Ÿ Ma-Luk Dog Sledding will bring one dog team. There will be several dog runs starting at 1 p.m.

Ÿ USA Luge Challenge - Luge runs will take place on Saturday and Sunday, with training times from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and race time at 1 p.m. The public is invited to participate.

Ÿ Eastern Mountain Sports (EMS) will demonstrate Snow Shoeing Saturday and Sunday.

Ÿ Telemark skiing demonstrations will be performed Saturday and Sunday.

Ÿ A Torch Light Parade will be held at 7 p.m. Saturday, followed by fireworks. The best place to view both the torch parade, and fireworks, is from the Valley Lodge and Tubing areas, as well as the Valley parking lots.

For more information, call 610-826-7700, or visit skibluemt.com.