Around Our Region published Jan. 19, 2022

The weekly Around Our Region calendar of events is published Wednesdays. Submissions may be emailed to with “Around our Region” in the subject line at least a week in advance.

Graphic art of a 2022 12-month calendar

Area celebrations

Spicer Winterfest: Jan. 15 through Feb. 5. Ice castle on the beach at Saulsbury Park, snowmobile racing, family events; and on Jan. 29 the 17th annual Polar Plunge, bonfire and fireworks.
Paynesville Winterfest: Feb. 19, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Events at the Paynesville Area Community Center, $5 entry fee, advance registration required at Paynesville Community Education.

Physical activities

Outdoor ice rinks: Open rinks with lights at Garfield, Hilltop and Lincoln parks.
Garfield warming house: 5 to 8 p.m. Monday and Thursday, 1 to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
Open skating: 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Sundays, Willmar Civic Center, $3 for all ages; $2 skate rental.
Adaptive/open curling: 4 to 5 p.m. Thursdays, Willmar Civic Center, $3 for all ages.

Willmar Community Center

WILLMAR — The Willmar Community Center has several events set for January. All events are free unless noted. The phone number is 320-262-5288 . For reservations call or online at .
Willmar Area Senior Citizens Club: Jan 19, 2 p.m., freewill donation, entertainment by Allen Carlson.
Friday afternoon of dancing: Jan. 21, 1 p.m., $2 non-dancers, $7 dancers; light lunch served; music to be determined.
Community board games: Jan. 22, 2 p.m., free, all ages. Learn a new featured game, bring some friends, and play any available games in our library.
Veterans coffee social: Jan. 24, 9:30 to 11 a.m., open to all veterans, police, fire and emergency medical services members.
Chunky yarn wreath: Jan. 25, 3 p.m., $12. A similar design to macramé, this yarn wreath will be a great décor piece in your home this winter.
Community bingo night: Jan. 25, 5 to 7 p.m., $3 per person, two cards per person.
How to be a GRAND, Grandparent: Jan. 26, 12:30 p.m., free. Looking to connect with your (great) grandkids? Come learn skills to connect and develop meaningful relationships with your grands.
Mario Kart Tournament: Jan. 28, 4:30 p.m., ages 12 and up. Put your racing speed to the test in our Mario Kart tournament, $2 entry fee.
Cooking with Riley — Dumplings: Jan. 29, 2 p.m., $20, advance registration required. Learn how to make this Asian favorite. Chef Riley will have two fillings available to try.
Book Club: Feb. 28, 3:30 p.m. First session of a new group being formed for a relaxed opportunity to read new books and enjoy discussion with other readers. Contact the community center for more details.
Yahoo for Yahtzee: Every Monday, 12:30 p.m.
Let’s Draw Art Sketching Club: Mondays, 1 p.m., ages 12-100, $5 for five classes. A weekly art class that will go over the basics of drawing, sketching and painting with basic art supplies provided.
Check Mates Chess Club: Mondays 6 p.m. Whether you are advanced or just learning the game, we would love to have you join our club.
Hand & Foot Cards: Every Tuesday and Thursday, 12:30 p.m., free, popular variation of canasta, easy to learn.
Community Kids: Wednesdays, 4 p.m. Different activities from crafts to science to simple creative snacks for K-5 students. Register one week in advance to assure appropriate supplies, $5 each week.
Square dance lessons: Thursdays, 6:30 p.m. Practice and learn the varieties of square dances. All ages and skills welcome.
Farkle Fridays: Every Friday, 1 to 4 p.m., all ages, a classic dice game to try and reach 10,000 points first. Each player will have their own cup and dice.
Exercise classes: Gently Yoga, Bone Builders, SAIL (Staying Active and Independent for Life), contact Community Center for details and prices.
Community puzzle exchange: Daily, 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., drop off, pick up, or swap out a puzzle in our exchange program.
Woodshop: Open 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays, 6 to 9 p.m. Monday evenings. Advance registration required by calling 320-262-5288 . Cost is $5 for a daily pass, $25 for a three-month membership, and $60 yearly.

Willmar Public Library

WILLMAR — The Willmar Library is open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. The website is . Call 320-235-3162 . Curbside pickup remains available during regular hours. Face masks strongly encouraged. Programs are in person in the library. The WiFi can be accessed 24/7 from a parked car in the lot behind the library or in front of the building using your library card or through Overdrive.
Brainfuse HelpNow: Free online tutoring service, grades K-12, one-to-one live homework help from online tutors between 2 and 11 p.m. daily; English or Spanish; math, science, English/language arts, social studies and reading assistance; app available for mobile.
Interactive movie kit: The interactive movie kits include a script along with props for up to six participants. Limit of one per week per household. Register on the library website. New titles each month.

Book Box: Register for a book box on the library website, check out a copy of the book, open the items as you reach specific chapters in the book, all ages


Teen lit loot: Sign up and you will receive a library book based on your interests and a bag of goodies to go with it. Ages 12-18 only, one per month and will need to re-register each month. January’s theme is sci-fi.

Teen Take & Make Crafts: Jan. 3 opened for yarn gnome, Jan. 24 opens for string tree. For ages 12-18, limit one per person as supplies are limited. Sign up on the library website.
Preschoolers storytime: Every Tuesday, 10 a.m., ages 3-6, no registration required.
Little People storytime: Every Wednesday, 10 a.m., ages 0-3, no registration required.
Teen movie: Jan. 19, 5:30 p.m., ages 12-18, no registration required.
Adult Book Club: Jan. 20, noon, “Maybe You Should Talk to Someone” by Lori Gottlieb. Book discussion upstairs at the library. New members are always welcome, meets every third Thursday.
Movie matinee: Jan. 21, 2 p.m., PG-13 rated, no cost or registration, refreshments provided.
Crafts and coloring: Jan. 26, 2 p.m. Bring any crafts or coloring you are working on or use the provided supplies for coloring and more.
Themed trivia night: Jan. 27, 6:30 p.m. The theme is the music group Queen. Individual players only, no teams; for age 18 and older. No registration required.
Teen Book Club: Jan. 28, 4 p.m., club discussion of this month’s book, in the multipurpose room, no registration necessary.

Donna Middleton started working at the West Central Tribune in 1975 and has been the news assistant since 1992. She compiles the arts, health, farm and community page calendars, as well as rewrites and works on the special sections.
She can be contacted at or phone 320-214-4341.
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