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February 23, 2014

Ice Palace popular beyond Winter Carnival

SARANAC LAKE — The Ice Palace here is still standing, still attracting visitors.

“We’ll see if it makes it through the weekend with the warmer temperatures,” Village of Saranac Lake Community Development Director Jeremy Evans said Friday.

The structure, built from huge ice blocks cut from Lake Flower for the annual Saranac Lake Winter Carnival, styles a Celtic theme this year and is lit up at night.

The carnival, which drew record crowds this year, ended Feb. 9.

The palace has been inspected daily, Evans said, and will remain standing on the shore of Pontiac Bay until it is determined unsafe or March 1, “whichever comes first.”

The Village of Saranac Lake Downtown Advisory Board calls the Ice Palace “the most recognizable symbol of the community’s annual cure for cabin fever.

“The structure — different every year — represents so much of what Saranac Lakers — and Adirondackers — hold dear,” a news release from the board said, “our environmental resources, the ability to get out and enjoy the outdoors, the creative spirit and the volunteerism at the center of our communities.” 

Recently, the Advisory Board recognized the huge amount of labor required to build the palace. Advisory Board members Gail Brill and Tim Fortune presented a Certificate of Appreciation to Ice Palace Workers Local 101 Chairman Dean Baker, who accepted it on behalf of the group that designs and builds it.

“The structure has year-round benefits to Saranac Lake,” the release said. “People who come to see it get to enjoy the village’s other amenities, including downtown Saranac Lake, and spread the word about us to friends and family far and wide.”

The Downtown Advisory Board, recently created by the Saranac Lake Village Board, periodically selects an individual, group or business that exhibits “a spirit of cooperation and selflessness that can be a model for others,” the release said.

Locals are invited to nominate others for similar recognition by the board. To do so, contact the Saranac Lake Village Community Development Department at 891-4150, Ext. 235 or email info@downtownsaranclake.com.

Email Suzanne Moore:smoore@pressrepublican.comTwitter: @editorsuzanne

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