No matter what the weather, carnival calls for a sunny-side up day

Throw in a chili cook-off, a home brew contest and a beauty pageant where a coat rack could win, spice it up with a hometown parade and an outhouse race, and you’ve got the perfect ingredients for the annual Homer Winter Carnival.

While the parade will be the big bash, Winter Carnival starts off with the Mr. Homer Pageant at 8 p.m. Friday at Alice’s Champagne Palace. Anyone — or anything — can enter. After the parade on Saturday, stick around for the Outhouse Race. Continue the fun with the Paul Banks Elementary School Winter Carnival from 1-4 p.m. Winter Carnival wouldn’t be the same without the basketball tournament on Friday starting with the Mariner girls vs. Ninilchik at 6:30 p.m.

The Winter Carnival parade will feature will feature two new floats — the Pratt Museum and the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Hickory. The Pratt Museum is rejoining the parade after a long absence, while this will be the USCGC Hickory’s first time involved in the parade. The Homer Chamber of Commerce also is  introducing five new award categories this year.

The Hickory crew is taking advantage of an anomaly in their schedule to be a part of the parade. Usually the boat is away from Homer when the Winter Carnival happens — often for a maintenance period in the Lower 48 — but the crew spent several months in Seattle last summer instead. 

“Normally the Hickory is somewhere else. We’re happy to be here, so we’re excited to jump on it,” said USCGC Hickory Captain Andy Passic.

The Hickory’s float will be their flat bed truck with a buoy and other Coast Guard paraphernalia surrounding it, Passic said. The buoy represents the work the crew does maintaining buoys for waterway traffic, a lot of which starts now as winter comes to a close. A few of the men from the Hickory will drive the truck with their kids and throw candy to the crowd during the parade. 

The Pratt Museum’s float will have a “Catch of the Day” theme and focuses on the upcoming bounty of spring and summer. The museum also reminds parade goers in their script that many traditional summer activities — such as tide pool viewing — are possible year round and the Pratt can provide information for those looking to get outdoors.

“The Pratt’s a gathering place in the community and the Winter Carnival is another big gathering and we just love to be part of that,” Bartlett said.

In addition to the traditional parade categories — “Best of Show,” “Best Children’s Group,” “Best Use of Theme” and “Judge’s Sentimental Favorite” — the chamber added a few more to this year’s prize list. Now floats can win “Best of Antique Cars, Trucks and Machinery,” “Best of Bikes and Trikes.” “Best Performing Arts” and “Best with Animals, Birds and Sea Creatures.” The floats will be judged this year by sponsor AlaskaUSA Federal Credit Union employees and the winners will receive Homer Bucks. Homer Bucks can be spent at the nearly 50 participating Homer businesses, said Visitor Center manager Jan Knutson, who is planning the parade this year.

The last new award is not for the parade floats at all, but for the storefronts of businesses and organizations on Pioneer Avenue. Any business on the parade route can decorate their storefront to coincide with the “Sunny Side-Up” theme. The winner will receive $50 to K-Bay Caffe.

“You don’t have to be chamber member to decorate your storefront,” Knutson said. “It’s a wonderful way for each of the businesses to get people to come into their store or gallery. Any business can decorate their storefront and be eligible for the prize.”




Friday, February 12:

Mr. Homer Pageant: 

8 p.m. at Alice’s Champagne Palace 

Entries are still open. Contact Dax for more information at 907-299-0319.

“Pretty much anything alive can enter. In fact, I would love to see a coat rack enter. The weirder the better,” Dax said.

There will be three rounds to the pageant: introduction/interview; talent; swim wear. 

Cash reward. The winner will receive a large check for $1.17 from the pageant and its sponsors.

$10 donation at the door. 

All profits go to Hospice of Homer and the Anchor Point food bank Helping Hands.


Saturday, February 13:


Noon Pioneer Avenue

President of Homer Pioneers Women of Alaska Marie Walker will act as citizen parade grand marshal. Homer Mayor Beth Wythe will ride in her white Trailblazer, driven by Toni Parlow.

Floats (entries as of 6 p.m. Feb. 9): 

Pratt Museum – Catch of the Day

Pioneers of Alaska

U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Hickory – featuring Coast Guard buoy and supplies

Homer Senior Citizens – Surfing Sunny-Side Up with Homer Seniors

Alaska Wilderness 4-Wheelers Tours – featuring four-wheelers with live chickens and baby chicks

Homer Council on the Arts – Wizard of Odds

Rural CAP Homer Headstart

Sprout, in partnership with Homer’s Imagination Library

The chamber will accept late parade entries until the end of today. For more information, contact Jan Knutson at the chamber, 235-7740.

Winter Carnival
Valentine Scavenger Hunt 

2-5 p.m. 

A search for heart-shaped rocks spread throughout the galleries. 

The Pratt Museum will be open from noon-5 p.m. and is free for whole month of February.


Chili Cook Off and Bake Sale

Wild Berry Emporium Saturday Market 

Entry fee: $8

Crockpot drop off: 10:30 a.m.-noon

Winners announced at 3 p.m.

Pick up crockpots at 3-4 p.m.

Contact: Sharlene Cline for more information, 907-299-7664.

Meat and vegetarian categories – entries should be a crockpot full of cooking

Winners for each category will receive a Fat Olives pizza. 

Chili can be purchased starting at 11 a.m., until 3 p.m.; $5 for a bowl of chili and bread, $16 for family of four.

The Chili Cook Off and bake sale will benefit the 2017 AK Kids to D.C. trip.


Table at Bay Realty: 

11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. 

Bake sale and hot cocoa and coffee table during parade, also going to AK Kids to DC


Outhouse race: 

Immediately following the parade
from K-Bay to the Grog Shop

Still room for contestants; contact Dax for more information at 907-299-0319.

Turn-around point sponsor, Lazer Print, will provide a special piece of machinery holding a roll of toilet paper that must be unfurled by each team before they turn around.

Trophies for fastest outhouse, “mostest-awesomest” outhouse, and most entertaining run. 

Defensive strategies are allowed: “If they want to lasso the head runner and nail him to the ground, that’s OK.”

All profits go to Hospice of Homer and the Anchor Point food bank Helping Hands.


Home brew tasting

2-6 p.m. at Bidarka 

Drop off entries of beer, wine and mead at Brew Shop by 6 p.m. Friday at Brew Shop

Judges are needed — call ahead to Sean Cullerton, 235-1470, or just show up around 2 p.m. No experience necessary.

Food and samples of Homer’s locally made beverages

21+ event, open to the public


South Peninsula Hospital Sunny-side up health event:

11 a.m.-1 p.m., 

Visit with Rob Downey, MD, for information on Vitamin D and light therapy. 

Coffee, cider and refreshments pre- and post-parade.

SPH Functional Medicine Clinic, 203 W. Pioneer Ave. For more information, call 235-0285

Paul Banks Elementary Kids Winter Carnival 

1-4 p.m.

Food, fun, games, prizes, face painting, etc.


Sunday, February 14:

Valentine’s Day 5K by Kachemak Bay Running Club 

10 a.m. Homer High Track

Register at Day of race registration starts at 9:15 a.m. $20 for adults, $10 for children 12 and under. Post-5K champagne brunch at Alice’s: limited brunch menu, mimosas, awards and chocolate cake. First 30 adults to pre-register receive mimosa or soft drink voucher at bib pick up.