The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Downtown hosts cold, snowy First Friday


January 6, 2018

Ralph Ansami/Daily Globe

GARY ENGSTROM, of Ironwood, goes retro with his ski jumping attire at Ironwood's First Friday event at the Cold Iron Brewery.


Ironwood - With the SISU cross country ski marathon scheduled for today, along with professional snowmobile racing at the fairgrounds track, downtown Ironwood kicked off the city events on Friday night with another First Friday celebration.

The continuing first Friday of the month event downtown focused on a theme of retro ski or snowmobile wear.

At the fittingly named Cold Iron Brewing, Gary Engstrom drew attention with his retro ski jumping gear, including helmet and goggles. He started ski jumping as a kid in 1951 and went on to considerable local fame, if not fortune, in the sport.

"I'm getting more attention now than I did when I was jumping," he joked, as several people lined up to take his photo in the ski jumping attire.

The Downtown First Friday events were initiated in 2017 and they became so popular that they were carried into this year.

Downtown merchants have obliged by remaining open later than normal for the First Fridays, which were held in the summer after the Depot Park farmers market sales had closed.

Today's Sisu cross country ski marathon was delayed by 90 minutes because of predicted bitter cold temperatures that followed a Friday with light, grainy snow all day.

The U.S. Snowmobile Association races were scheduled to run today and Sunday at the fairgrounds ice oval off Cloverland Drive, weather permitting.

Warmer weather is predicted for Sunday.


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