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Boston’s 'Snowport' Brings Rustic Charm to Valentine’s Day

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Seaport, one of Boston’s trademark shopping and events districts, took on a new name and facade this winter with the addition of a new winter village: Snowport. Debuting in December and continuing until the end of February, Snowport offers affordable ice skating, curling, and — perhaps most notably — waffles. This Valentine’s Day, holiday themed waffles and some special guests helped set the mood for a love-filled evening in the winter village.

The Waffle Cabin is a cozy, rustic-themed shop that accurately represents the village aesthetic of Snowport. First a street cart in Boston’s Quincy Market, Waffle Cabin has since grown into a waffle empire, present at ski resorts from Massachusetts to Colorado. The Vermont-style waffles are served as handheld confections, drizzled in chocolate or your choice of syrupy topping. Eating the fried, sugary treats by hand fully captures the rustic mountain motif, especially as village-goers carry the food around the ice rink on their skates. As a Valentine’s Day treat, Waffle Cabin offered a special Valentine waffle with a chocolate and strawberry-caramel drizzle.

After entering and enjoying a waffle at the Waffle Cabin or a meal from Oath Pizza next door, skate rentals and an indoor area are located just a few steps away. While smaller than Boston Common’s Frog Pond, the skate rink offers ample space for skaters of all skills. Plastic seals are even available to help keep your balance, either by sitting or leaning on them while skating. If real ice is not your forte, dry curling lanes are directly adjacent to the rink for some competitive family fun. The outdoor patio surrounding the rink also offers a photo-op in a vintage mountain gondola, reinforcing Snowport’s chalet-like atmosphere.

For Valentine’s Day, the gondola was filled with yellow flowers courtesy of Bumble, the online dating app. Bumble also gave away free company merchandise to advertise their dating, friend-making, and business networking platforms.

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Next to Bumble’s decorated table, local artist Monique Aimee ran a free valentine station. Guests could either paint their own wooden valentine heart, or get free brush calligraphy courtesy of Aimee.

Snowport also invited Instagram sensation Joe M. Sparkes — better known as Joe Sax Boston — to join in the Valentine’s Day festivities. Sparkes filled the village with saxophone riffs. He performs at various street venues around Boston and became famous for covering Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On” outside her TD Garden concert last December. When asked about his Snowport appearance, Sparkes said he was there to help spread Valentine's cheer and was grateful for the opportunity to reach a wider audience.

Luis Querubin, a Snowport staffer, said that turnout increased only slightly for the Valentine’s Day event. Querubin said the rink is the most enjoyable part of Snowport, along with the experience of being in such a beautiful city. His goal is to increase turnout in the following years.

Although only open through the end of the month, there are several special events coming up in Snowport. Make it into town to learn to curl on Feb. 22 or celebrate Mardi Gras with a celebration all day Feb. 25.

—Staff Writer Jacob R. Jimenez can be reached at jacob.jimenez@thecrimson.com.

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