The weekend’s chilly weather provided the ideal atmosphere for Lake Metroparks Farmpark community events.
Farmpark in Kirtland hosts its annual Snow Festival on the evening of January 27th and January 28th from 9am to 5pm. The event offers a range of ice-related activities and attractions.
Visitors of all ages can sit on the ice throne while younger children take turns sliding down the ice slide.
Talented ice sculptors were also on hand to create various sculptures and compete in speed sculpture competitions for the audience gathered in and around the Farmpark Pond Pavilion.
World champion ice sculptor Aaron Costic from Elegant Ice Creations turned a block of ice into a mummy in just 22 minutes during the 10.30am show on January 28.
Complete ice sculptures, including unicorns and dragons, are also on display for guests to admire and pose for photos alongside.
Farmpark initially began inviting ice sculptors to perform at the annual FarmFest event in the summer.
“We thought it would be fun to carve ice sculptures in mid-July, so we put (the ice sculptors) in the pavilion and they got a lot of people carving,” said Andy McGovern, Farmpark Events Manager .
After seeing audience reactions to the initial show, Farmpark leaders began discussions with Medina city officials about an annual winter snow festival.
Ultimately, Lake Metroparks Farmpark decided to hold its first ever Snow Festival in late January 2017.
“It sort of went from there and evolved over the years,” McGovern said. “It’s just a fun family activity.”
Paul and Lora Gust and their two children, Caleb, 4, and Adam, 7, join a family at the 2023 Lake Metroparks Farmpark Snow Festival on Jan. 28.
The Gust family drove from their home in Chagrin Falls to Farmpark at 8800 Euclid Chardon Road.
Laura said she learned about it from Caleb’s kindergarten teacher.
“(Caleb and Adam) love the playground and they haven’t been able to play in it for a few weeks,” Lora said.
While Lora said Caleb and Adam look forward to using the Farmpark’s indoor playground, the boys also made several trips down the ice slide set up outside the Farmpark Visitor Center.
Laura also said the family doesn’t mind visiting the outdoor attractions of the Snow Festival in 30-degree weather.
“Snow is better than rain,” she said.
Brian Hoaglin and Nichole Hoaglin of Orange Village are also enjoying the Jan. 28 Snow Festival with their two children, Luke, 4, and Atom, 2.
Brian says the Ice Festival is “fantastic,” and Luke and Atom think it’s “really cool” to watch Kostic carve mummies out of ice.
McGovern noted that the Ice Festival is about agriculture because ice harvesting was big business before modern refrigeration.
“People would go to Lake Erie that was frozen and they would cut the ice,” he said.