St. Paul Winter Carnival: the Coolest Celebration

November 26, 2012 by

St. Paul Winter Carnival

The St. Paul Winter Carnival bills itself as the “coolest celebration on Earth.” If there is anywhere that knows how to celebrate winter, it’s St. Paul. They have held this winter festival in St. Paul since 1886!

If you want to join the fun this year, the 127th St. Paul Winter Carnival will be held January 24-February 3, in 2013.

St. Paul Winter Carnival Ice Sculpture

St. Paul Winter Carnival Activities

The St. Paul Winter Carnival is the oldest winter festival in the nation. The 10-day long festivities start with the coronation of King Boreas and the Queen of the Snows and ends with a torchlight parade that flows through downtown St. Paul.

Highlights include the parade which features antique sleighs and cutters, cultural celebrations, ice carving and snow sculpture contests, sled races, softball on ice, ice golf, as well as skiing, skating, and a giant snow slide.

St. Paul Winter Carnival Sleigh and Cutter Festival

St. Paul Winter Carnival Sleigh and Cutter Festival

Minnesota State Snow Sculpting Championship

Snow and ice sculpture play a big role at St Paul Winter Carnival. Teams compete to create the picturesque figures from 20 blocks of ice. They have 48 hours to carve and finish the job.

It’s entertaining to watch, but the finished products produce a whole new dimension to the winter wonderland.

To complement the St. Paul Winter Carnival contests, the Minnesota State Snow Sculpting Championship also takes place during the carnival in Como Park where visitors can challenge their sense of direction in an ice maze.

St. Paul Winter Carnival

Beer Dabbler Festival

The 4th Annual Beer Dabbler Festival will also be held on January 26. Those who purchase tickets for this event will have the opportunity to enjoy craft brews and more as twice as many breweries are participating this year.

Along with that, the festival will host more live music stages. In all, more than 100 breweries will offer samples of 300 beers, and they are putting on a homebrew contest.

If you plan to attend the event, be sure to check their website for updates, because the weather can influence activities. For instance, the lack of snowfall last year, led to the cancellation of the snow sculpture contest.

Photo credits: pmarkham, zman z28, zman z28, zbartrout

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