GCI Snow Sculpture Competition 2015

Saadman Bin Abdullah, Reporter

Alaska is the place for beauty, wildlife, ruggedness and anything else you can ever imagine doing. From mountain hiking to scuba diving, Alaska has it all. One of the most famous of all the Alaskan events is the Fur Rondy Festival. 2015 marks the 100th year of Anchorage as a city and this time the municipality has outdone itself!

Starting from a huge carnival to a classic car showcase, Anchorage has a whole variety of events planned for the spectators. The GCI Snow Sculpture Competition is one of the most famous of these events where sculptors carve their imagination on a 8x8x8 block of snow.

There are a lot of teams participating in this event, which ranges from Division I, teams who are competing at a national level to win the U.S. titles, to elementary children who are competing to see who can have the most fun.

Jesse Mellor, a professional ice sculptor, is now in his 6th year of ice carving. He said, “It is my passion and I look forward to it every year.” They are competing against a couple of other Division I teams. They have gone with the elements of fire and water to put on a show for thousands of people. He also said, “We normally put around 150-200 man hours for our sculpture between three members of our team.” It is hard working and painstaking but in the end, it is all worth it. They are hoping to win this year and qualify to compete as a Alaska team in the Nationals which takes place in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin in January 2016.

One of the spectators at the event, Jonathan Cusack, was amazed at what people can do with just a mundane object such as snow. He said, “It was very cool. The castle, the walrus, and the fire and water fusion were my personal favorites.” He took a couple of pictures and said he would definitely be back next year to see all the other new ones that will take place in the next Fur Rendezvous Festival.

Another spectator, Sarah Parker, was also mesmerized to see the magic on snow. She said, “I have been coming back for years now but I haven’t been disappointed once.” She always comes back to see the wonderful snow sculptures.

The snow sculptures, truly, are abstract pieces of art; idea that grows into imagination and finally becomes a reality to be showcased in front of the whole world. It is ecstatic to see a world-class event right here in our home city. So visit the festival now and get ready to be star struck!