HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) – A beloved holiday tradition has returned to the Capitol City! Winterfest Hartford is back!

It was canceled last year because of the pandemic, but Mayor Luke Bronin says it will be bigger and better than ever before. The centerpiece of the event is the ice-skating rink, which always draws in thousands of people from all over the state.

News 8 was there as it was being set up on Friday in Bushnell Park.

“This year, Winterfest is bigger than ever because it’s not just the free skating and the carousel just across the park and hot chocolate here, but also, WinterFair, where we’ll be featuring about 100 local small businesses up on Trumbull and Pratt Street throughout the course of the season,” Bronin said.

Winterfest Hartford kicks off on Black Friday and runs until January 9.