Skiing and snowboarding return to Winter Blast Royal Oak alongside tasty treats and cool outdoor winter activities

Free ice skating returns at Winter Blast Royal Oak in 2023. (photo courtesy: WBRO)

ROYAL OAK, Mich. – Organizers of Winter Blast Royal Oak (WBRO) presented by the Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort, returning Friday, Feb. 3 through Sunday, Feb. 5, 2023, today unveiled the complete lineup of family-friendly activities and entertainment for this year.

Winter Blast festivities will surround The Rink at Royal Oak at Centennial Commons located between Main and Troy streets and 11 Mile Road and 3rd Street, and will include a winter wonderland of outdoor activities, live local music, family fun and more.


Winter Blast Royal Oak welcomes the return of sponsor Mt. Brighton Ski Resort, who will deliver a learn to ski and snowboard experience right in downtown Royal Oak – no mountains required. Mt. Brighton’s state-of-the-art snowmaking machines will deliver the snow for a beginner ski slope and provide eventgoers with ski or snowboard gear, as well as lessons from Mt. Brighton Ski and Ride School instructors throughout the weekend.


Winter Blast will feature a Snow Slide that will deliver exhilarating fun in downtown Royal Oak. Presented by the City of Royal Oak, the 25-feet high and 200-feet long Snow Slide will offer thrill seekers the opportunity to zoom down the snowy white hill on inner tubes. Snow Slide rides will be $5.


For one weekend only Winter Blast Royal Oak attendees can ice skate for free at The Rink at Royal Oak, the new outdoor ice rink presented by M3 Investment Services. The 60’ x 90’ family-friendly ice rink accommodates up to 200 skaters at a time in the heart of Royal Oak’s Centennial Commons. Visitors can bring their own skates or rent a pair for $5.


To add to the festival’s ambiance and continue the winter theme, Winter Blast will feature an ice garden presented by Henry Ford Health filled with expertly carved and stunning, Insta-worthy sculptures that will colorfully light up at night. Some of the themes and designs include Detroit sports, sleigh horses, Dino and Gnome Village brought to life and a special tribute to the armed forces with sculptures of Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine logos, which will be placed on the grass behind the Royal Oak War Memorial. 

The ice garden will be located throughout Centennial Commons near The Rink at Royal Oak with live ice carving demonstrations planned throughout the weekend.

Photo courtesy: WBRO


Shake off the chilly temperatures and groove to the sounds of many talented musicians from across metro Detroit. Winter Blast Royal Oak provides a unique showcase of up-and-coming acts along with longtime favorites, who will be performing live across three stages located inside heated tents throughout all three days of the festival. Video screens will be placed outside of each tent allowing visitors to enjoy the performances while walking through the festival footprint. 

The Soaring Eagle Stage, located in the United Way 211 Comfort Zone, will include performances by bands and musical acts representing a variety of genres, such as country musician, Ryan Jay; acoustic singer and songwriter Bobby Brooks; the high-energy blues and roots rock group, Carl Caballero and The Wreckage and Virginia Violet and the Rays, an intimate five-piece indie pop band bursting with nods to the Motown and soul greats.

Soaring Eagle Stage headliners include The Family Tradition Band, a country group bringing a modern take on an old timeless classic sound; popular party-starters Larry Lee & the Back in the Day Band and veterans of the Detroit rock scene Tino Gs Dumpster Machine will bring the rock and roll, blues and a little bit of funk.

Located inside the House of Dank Comfort Zone, the House of Dank Stage will also feature a wide variety of genres such as Americana from singer-songwriter Rebecca Cameron; garage rock from The Incurables, high-energy pop from The Oneders and alternative rock from Nick James and The Holy Rollers.

Closing out the party on the House of Dank Stage is Detroit-born funk singer Cye Pie; high-energy reggae band Detroit Riddim Crew and the soulful R&B powerhouse, Alise King.

Over on the DTE Energy Kids Stage inside the Huntington Bank Kids Tent, families with children will be treated to engaging and entertaining performances from magicians, puppeteers, jugglers, musicians and more. Featured acts include Rocky the Dino Puppet Show, Randyl Lee Magic Show, Zippity 2 Guys & A Guitar, Kevin Devin Music Show, Juggler Tim Salisbury and Natspinz Hula Hoops.

Later each evening, top DJs from Movement Detroit Presents will hit the stage to spin tunes and drop beats for the adult eventgoers.


Thrill-seekers can soar over Winter Blast from a zip line sponsored by Baker College. This 300-foot long, 34-foot-high zip line will offer riders the ultimate rush with panoramic views of Royal Oak’s Centennial Commons. The zip lines rides will take place on 3rd Street just east of Troy Street. Tickets are available at $10 each.


The House of Dank Comfort Zone will provide the ultimate chill zone in the form of an igloo, along with three days of live music on the House of Dank Performance Stage. Guests can try their luck with a spin on the Wheel of Wonder Loyalty Game, play a friendly game of cornhole or snap some pictures at the epic photo wall. House of Dank also will have CBD products and merchandise available for purchase.

Marshmallow roasting (photo courtesy: WBRO)


In addition to an interactive activation courtesy of the Detroit Red Wings, featuring the Detroit Red Wings Kid’s Club and more to be announced soon, there will be plenty of family-friendly activities offered inside the Huntington Bank Kids Tent. Kiddos can spark their curiosity with activity stations and experiments from Michigan Science Center, while exploring their creativity by assembling cute cozy critters using repurposed materials courtesy of Arts & Scraps. All activities are free of charge.


Fuel up (and warm up) with good eats. In addition to the many downtown restaurants available for visitors to dine at, Winter Blast Royal Oak will showcase a variety of local food trucks, representing an array of menu items and tastes. From juicy hamburgers to Hawaiian stir-fry to authentic Nigerian cuisine and crave-worthy confections – there’s a little bit of something for everyone.

This year’s participating food trucks include Chick-A-D, Cinnabon, Detroit Hot Sandwich, Egg Roll Diva, Fork in Nigeria, Imperial Tacos, Island Noodles, Little Bros. Burgers, Mercurio Elephant Ears, Mercurio Popper, Mr. Deep Fried, Niko’s Gyros and The Little Donut Factory.

Additionally, marshmallow roasting stations located throughout the festival grounds will offer festivalgoers a place to warm their mitts and also enjoy a tasty, toasty treat reminiscent of summertime campfires. Marshmallow and s’more kits will be available starting at $3 per kit. 


Festivalgoers can opt for overnight stays at the Hotel Royal Oak to enjoy Winter Blast Royal Oak for free. Not only can they take advantage of an affordable rate, but they can receive two free hot chocolate drinks, marshmallow kit, zip line pass and two free skate rentals. 

Hotel Royal Oak is a boutique hotel with stylishly retro-modern touches and a resort vibe. Conveniently located just steps away from the festival, it offers guests the opportunity to enjoy a mini-vacation in downtown Royal Oak. Amenities include concierge service, a hot breakfast, high-speed WI-FI, HDTV flat screen TVs and perks at local restaurants and clubs.

Photo courtesy: WBRO


Admission to Winter Blast Royal Oak is free and open to the public from 4 p.m.  11 p.m. Friday, Feb. 3; 11 a.m.  11 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 4 and 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 5.Parking will be available at parking decks and lots throughout downtown Royal Oak. A map with parking locations and rates will be announced and added to by Jan. 17. 


Winter Blast Royal Oak is grateful for the generous support from returning presenting sponsor Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort, as well as the City of Royal Oak, The Detroit News, DTE Energy, Faygo, Henry Ford Health, House of Dank, Huntington Bank, Lincoln Tap, 

M3 Investment Services, Maker’s Mark, Mt. Brighton Ski Resort, Mr. Roof, Royal Oak DDA, United Way and US Park.

About Winter Blast Royal Oak

Winter Blast Royal Oak is a celebration of winter experiences, dining, music and family fun, originally created as the backdrop for Super Bowl XL. For additional information, call 248-541-7550 or visit

Source: Winter Blast Royal Oak

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