Winterfest 2013

Winterfest was supposed to be the weekend of February 9, but we had actual winter then in the form of the not-blizzard winter storm Nemo. Rescheduled Winterfest was this past weekend, when they were predicting another big storm. That storm turned out to be a whole bunch of nothing, but between the change of plans and weather forecast, far fewer people came out than anticipated. We, at any rate, had a fabulous day.

We took advantage of the giant inflatable snow globe on Marsh Plaza for pictures. It was a bit freaky that they blew what appeared to be tiny ripped-up shreds of plastic grocery bags at us. I tried not to think about how many toxins were in that plastic.

We met up with Carlos and Sandra and their girls, Olivia and Alex, and enjoyed all the free hot chocolate the kids could drink, plus all the cups of marshmallows Robert and Carlos could ply them with, and we all went into Marsh Chapel to tell the kids about how Carlos and Sandra were married right there.

We (and by we I mean Robert and Marcus) ice skated on the silicone-topped "ice" they laid down on the plaza for the day, particularly enjoying skating with the big mascot, Rhett. Marcus has come far in his liking of giant animal-people, for sure.

Then, for the highlight of the day, we competed family-against-family in an ice sculpting competition. There were eight entrants, including Carlos and Sandra's polar bear, a second-prize-winning king monster, a "BU girl" with a pom-pom, and a first-prize-winning Baby Patrick from "Sponge Bob." In a classroom, we drew our design. Inspired by Marcus's hat, and eschewing all rulers and protractors as things which would make this process take way too long, I free-handed an R2-D2 on tissue paper. Marcus had said he wanted to carve either R2-D2 or Spiderman (since this month alone he watched Episode IV for the first (and second) time and got his first-ever comic book, Spiderman and a dragon). We decided R2-D2 was way easier to do out of ice, so The Skating Jedis we were, as a team name, and R2-D2 it was.

They taped our design to our block of ice (reserved for just $15--what a bargain!) and the professional ice-sculptor came in with a chainsaw to cut out the outline for us. Marcus took one of the discarded pieces of ice and started sculpting it on the side. We could use any of a huge array of chisels and awls and other hand-tools that the ice sculptor brought with him, so we set about our work.

By this point we had aquired a fifth team member in the form of Basil, who, abandoned by his brothers and sisters for the day, became an honorary sibling here and a valuable member of our sculpting team. We all worked the ice at various points (except for Samantha--she just supervised). Basil, Samantha, and I also ran across the street to Nud Pob for take-out noodles and other Thai-style sustenance during the sculpting.

The professional ice artist, Eric, was great. He said he always knew he wanted to be an artist, and he was "creating art" since he was younger than Marcus. I asked how he came to do this, though, since, really, professional ice sculptors hardly seem to be that common, and he said that when he was a teenager he realized it was his destiny ("You do believe in destiny, right?" he asked me) to work with ice, even two years before he touched a block of it. Basil put on his best Darth Vader voice at that, of course, and started intoning quotes from the movies, and we all agreed that we did indeed believe in destiny.

When we were nearly done, Eric came back over with a high-powered dremmel and showed Robert and Basil how to use it to outline some of our detail work--it was amazing how crisp it got things!

Ultimately, we won third place in the contest, and we are already planning our team effort for next year's Winterfest.


Go back to web essays or over to links. was made with a Mac.
© 2013 C&R Enterprises
Email or
Created: 2/26/13. Last Modified: 2/26/13.