2018 Ice Palace Update

Greetings Members, Friends and Supporters,

The 132nd Saint Paul Winter Carnival is gearing up for another “super” year and we are actively working on plans for an extended 2018 Saint Paul Winter Carnival that will connect with Super Bowl events in Saint Paul and across the metro area. The 2018 Saint Paul Winter Carnival – the “Coolest Celebration on Earth™” will be held January 25 – February 10, 2018. We’ll be hosting dozens of events on the calendar, both traditional favorites and new attractions, to entertain our local supporters and out-of-town visitors.

The Foundation’s ice palace team has spent a considerable amount of time working on plans, locations, and costs for the potential 2018 ice structure. This includes looking at places to harvest ice, the architecture and engineering services needed to design the structure, and other planning needed to build and operate an ice structure. At the same time, they have also been in contact with local and national potential sponsors to recruit and secure key funding partners. To move forward with building an ice palace, a minimum budget of $5 million is needed to guarantee financial stability of the ice palace and the Saint Paul Festival and Heritage Foundation.

We are disappointed to announce that we were not able to secure financial support to cover costs to allow the project to move forward. As a result, the Foundation has made the decision to cancel the plans and will not be moving forward with an ice palace for the 2018 Winter Carnival.

We were faced with a significant challenge and could not resolve it with the confidence that we could both cover the costs of constructing and operating the ice palace and not negatively impact our organization’s long-term financial future.

So, now we focus on making the extended 2018 Saint Paul Winter Carnival as fun, festive and “cool” as possible. In addition to Carnival’s signature events — the three parades, ice carving competition and snow sculpting contest — next year’s schedule will include a variety of new events and activities, including:

  • The United States Olympic Committee’s Team USA WinterFest presented by HERSHEY is bringing the energy and excitement of the Olympics and Paralympic 2018 Winter Games to the Carnival.
  • The tour will feature meet and greets with figure skating’s gold medal winner Meryl Davis bobsledding gold medal winner Vonetta Flowers; as well as Olympians Jeremy Bloom (Ski and Snowboard), and Charlie White (Figure Skating). Other highlights include Hershey’s S’moresmobile, a Bobsled Boomerang, and a Curling Challenge.
  • Rice Park will be transformed into a spectacular Ice Sculpture Garden complete with large ice sculptures, additional and larger competitions, and live ice carving demonstrations throughout the Carnival.
  • The Vulcan’s Snow Park at the State Fairgrounds will be open and ready for play for 17 days! Once again, it will be the site of the Minnesota State Snow Sculpting Competition, a giant snow slide, Vulcan Fun Day on Jan. 28, and two Vulcan Polar Plunges for Special Olympics, as well as NEW lawn mower and bar stool ski races!

We sincerely appreciate your understanding of the decisions made and above all your commitment and support of the Saint Paul Winter Carnival – the “Coolest Celebration on Earth!™” We look forward to a great 2018 Carnival in Old Saint Paul!

Thank you for your support!

Jennifer Tamburo
Board Chair
Saint Paul Festival and Heritage Festival

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Exciting New Features at the 2018 Winter Carnival!

The 132nd Saint Paul Winter Carnival is gearing up for another “super” year and we are actively working on plans for an extended 2018 Saint Paul Winter Carnival that will connect with Super Bowl events in Saint Paul and across the metro area. The 2018 Saint Paul Winter Carnival – the “Coolest Celebration on Earth™” – will be held January 25 – February 10, 2018. We’ll be hosting dozens of events, both traditional favorites and new attractions, to entertain our local supporters and out-of-town visitors.

The extended 2018 Saint Paul Winter Carnival will be as fun, festive and “cool” as possible. In addition to the Carnival’s signature events — the three parades, ice carving competition and snow sculpting contest — next year’s schedule will include a variety of new events and activities, including:

  • The United States Olympic Committee’s Team USA WinterFest presented by HERSHEY is bringing the energy and excitement of the Olympics and Paralympic 2018 Winter Games to the Carnival.

    The tour will feature meet and greets with figure skating’s gold medal winner Meryl Davis bobsledding gold medal winner Vonetta Flowers; as well as Olympians Jeremy Bloom (Ski and Snowboard), and Charlie White (Figure Skating). Other highlights include Hershey’s S’moresmobile, a Bobsled Boomerang, and a Curling Challenge.

  • Rice Park will be transformed into a spectacular Ice Sculpture Garden complete with large ice sculptures, additional and larger competitions, and live ice carving demonstrations throughout the Carnival.
  • The Vulcan’s Snow Park at the State Fairgrounds will be open and ready for play for 17 days! Once again, it will be the site of the Minnesota State Snow Sculpting Competition, a giant snow slide, Vulcan Fun Day on Jan. 28, and two Vulcan Polar Plunges for Special Olympics, as well as NEW lawn mower and bar stool ski races!
  • A “Fancy” Hot Dish Competition at The Lexington Restaurant will be on Wednesday, Feb. 7. This new competition will feature local restaurant chefs competing for the title of Best Hot Dish in the Twin Cities.
  • Rice Park will be rocking thanks to the Winter Carnival Music Series, Friday through Sunday on all three weekends. Come out and enjoy live music from local and regional artists.
  • The Autonomous Snow Plow Competition will be held first weekend (Friday through Saturday) on 4th Street by Rice Park. Witness young geniuses and their robotic creations pave the way for Carnival festivities.
  • The Securian Winter Run is back for another year, on Saturday, January 27th. Lace up, bundle up and participate in the half marathon, 10k, 5k or the new Kids Fun Run. Registration is now open!

And so much more, coming soon!

Save the date – January 25-February 10 – and join us for these exciting features and MORE at the 2018 Saint Paul Winter Carnival!

Queen of Snows Candidate Program Opens

Applications are now being accepted for the 2018 Saint Paul Winter Carnival Queen of Snows Candidate Program. Since 1886, the Queen of Snows Candidate Program offers women an exciting and unique opportunity to participate in the Saint Paul Winter Carnival. Each January, five women are chosen to serve as Aurora, Queen of the Snows and the North, East, West and South Wind Princesses. These five Royal Women serve as public relations ambassadors for their sponsors, the Saint Paul Winter Carnival and the City of Saint Paul throughout 2018.

The Queen of Snows program is open to all women. There are no restrictions with regard to marital status, dependents, place of residence or employment status. The minimum requirements are to be 21 years of age by Coronation Day (January 26, 2018) and be a high school graduate.

“Being a working mother, a wife, and a student I hope that my reign as Queen of Snows shows women who worry about having too many commitments to run that they can do it! This candidacy is a once in a lifetime experience, that creates long lasting friendships, expands networks and allows for personal and professional growth. Any woman who feels the call to be a great ambassador of our right royal winter capitol of Saint Paul or to inspire others to get out and give back to the community, must pursue this opportunity.” – Alyssa Sigafus, 2016 Aurora Queen of the Snows.

A Candidate Meet and Greet will be held on October 12 from 5:30-7:30 pm at Mama T’s Castle Tap (Lower Level), 2500 Rice Street, Little Canada, MN 55113. This is a casual setting for those that are considering running as a Candidate for the Queen of Snows with the 2018 Saint Paul Winter Carnival (January 25-February 10, 2018) to ask questions and mingle with other candidates. Attendees will have an opportunity to meet the Candidate Committee and the 2017 Royal Women. 

The Saint Paul Winter Carnival is produced by The Saint Paul Festival and Heritage foundation a non-profit organization that produces two large festivals a year – The Saint Paul Winter Carnival and Cinco de Mayo West Side Saint Paul. The mission of the Foundation is to foster a sense of community, pride, belonging and connectedness by celebrating Saint Paul’s unique history and emerging heritage through fun and educational experiences.

Click Here for more information on the Queen of Snows Candidate Program

Save the Date for the Sal & Francesca LoBaido Service Award Dinner

The Sal LoBaido Volunteer Service Award is awarded annually to the individual, living or deceased, who best meets the spirits of commitment and volunteerism to the Saint Paul Winter Carnival that was displayed by Sal LoBaido. Join us on Tuesday, September 26 at Best Western White Bear Country Inn to honor this years winners!

For more information, click here.

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Twin Cities Beach Blast Returns!

Our friends at the Aquatennial Ambassador Organization are bringing back one of the most beloved Aquatennial events – The Twin Cities Beach Blast on Sunday, July 16th at Thomas Beach, Lake Calhoun in Minneapolis.

Registration is now open for the Milk Carton Boat Race as well as the Sandcastle Competition. Please visit Twin Cities Beach Blast online for more information or to register today!

Winter Carnival Planning Committee Chair Nominations Available

We are currently looking for volunteers who have been supporters of the Saint Paul Festival & Heritage Foundation and the Saint Paul Winter Carnival including past and current members, event coordinators, Board members, volunteers, community partners, sponsors or past uniform group legend characters to serve in the two-year Winter Carnival Planning Chair or Co-Chair position.  Candidates will assist Winter Carnival Planning Committee Co-Chairs Kathy & Jeff Bjerke in 2018, then serve as Chair/Co-Chair in 2019 and 2020. Click on the link below for more information on the duties of the position. Nominations are due by April 17.

Planning Committee Chair Nomination and Duties

Announcing our 2017 Saint Paul Winter Carnival Nonprofit Partner, Family Means

We are proud to announce our 2017 Saint Paul Winter Carnival Nonprofit Partner, Family Means. “At FamilyMeans, we help support people through challenges in their lives. We listen without judgment, offer encouragement and believe in our clients even when they may not believe in themselves. We are committed to offering financial solutions; caregiving and aging support; counseling and therapy, including specialized services for grief and loss; and youth development. A nonprofit, FamilyMeans inspires trust, clarity, confidence and hope ― and has since 1963. Click here to learn more.

Guaranteed Parking – Reserve Your Spot for the Saint Paul Winter Carnival Today!

We have partnered with Parking Panda, the nationwide leader in online parking reservations, to allow visitors to purchase guaranteed parking at many convenient locations in downtown Saint Paul for the 2017 Saint Paul Winter Carnival.

Once purchased, parking passes are emailed instantly and guarantee you access to your selected location. Parking is very limited and locations fill up, so we strongly recommend that you reserve your 100% guaranteed parking space now! Parking Panda does not reserve handicapped parking spots. If you have questions or need assistance booking your reservation, call Parking Panda at (800) 232-6415.

Reserve Winter Carnival Parking

2017 Royal Coronation Tickets Available

Royal Dinner and Royal Coronation Schedule of Events:

Advanced reservations are required, please click here to be taken to the Royal Coronation Page; scroll to the bottom of the page to reserve your tickets today!  Tickets are $80 per person; $800 per table of 10.  Prices go to $90 per person; $900 per table of 10 on January 16, 2017. 
5:30 pm – Social Hour
7:00 pm – Royal Dinner
8:00 pm – Coronation of the 2017 Royal Family
~10:00 pm – The Royal Family Greet Their Loyal Subjects

Public Viewing of the Royal Coronation:

Admission is $10 and a 2017 Saint Paul Winter Carnival Button; admission and buttons can be purchased at the Saint Paul RiverCentre from 6:30pm to 8pm January 27th only.
The public is welcome to attend the Royal Coronation portion of the evening.  Doors open for general seating at approximately 7:30pm.  Public seating is first come first served.  See above for schedule of evening.

Welcome Reception:

Free and open to the public.
A welcome reception for the newly crowned Winter Carnival Royalty will be held immediately following the dinner and program (approximately 10 p.m.) at the Saint Paul RiverCentre.

2017 Public Button Unveiling, Saturday, November 19, 2017

The unveiling will take place in conjunction with the Rice Park Powered by Xcel Energy Tree Lighting Ceremony taking place in Rice Park. The event includes live music, theatrical performances and fireworks!  In addition to the Tree Lighting Ceremony, Wells Fargo WinterSkate opens for the season as well.  We invite you to bring your family to Downtown Saint Paul to join in all the fun activities.

Entertainment in Rice Park is expected to start at 5 p.m. with the Winter Carnival Button Unveiling scheduled for approximately 5:45 p.m. on the Rice Park Powered by Xcel Stage. We hope to see you there!