Before the sixth annual Deep Freeze Festival kicked off, Christy Morin, Artistic Director, told the Edmonton Journal, “It’s really turning into a great Edmonton community festival.” I couldn’t agree more, as one would be hard pressed to find a better example of a free, family-friendly winter event that gives Edmontonians a great reason to venture outside and interact with our climate, in a way that doesn’t break the bank (here’s looking at you, Metropolis).
The always popular horse and carriage
Mack and I took the bus over to the Alberta Avenue community yesterday afternoon to take part in the festivities. The weather was cooperating, with temperatures falling in between last year’s equivalent of a spring thaw, and 2011’s shockingly cold conditions.
Although there was a lot to see and do, there were still a lot of things in progress at that time. For example, some of the thaw huts, constructed to try and capture the sun’s warmth, were still being put together.
Thaw hut under construction
Mack enjoys the warmth of one of the completed huts
The chainsaws and chisels were also out in full force over in the ice sculpting compound, the artists still in the midst of creating their pieces of work. Some of the shapes relating to this year’s “Wild West” theme were starting to come through – a cactus here, a horse there.
Carving in progress
It was a theme that was carried through many of the other exhibits, from the horse and carriage snow sculpture to the gold mine ice slide, to the amazing pistol-shaped ice bar.
Beautiful snow sculpture
In the outdoor saloon
I think Deep Freeze excels in offering active programming. Kids and adults alike were having a blast trying to beat log sawing times, trying their hand at curling, or skating on the ice surface.
Olde tyme curling
Mack and I were most looking forward to watching the deep freezer races, where old freezers strapped with skis were pushed across a snowy track. We’ve missed this event over the past few years, but were glad to finally catch it – it looked like so much fun!
See those freezers go!
Congrats to the organizers for a great event – Deep Freeze is one festival that just seems like it gets better and better every year!