Inaugural Portland on Ice Festival Kicks Off with Unveiling of Ice Sculptures; “We Hope it Will Grow and Maybe We’ll be Like Quebec Someday,” Beitzer

Jan Beitzer and Will Ethridge, PDD. Dog, "JC" is in Beitzer's Arms!

Jeff Day, Ice Designs, Puts Finishing Touches on Ice Sculpture in Front of Portland Museum of Art. By Carol McCracken (Post # 1,069)

“This unveiling of two ice sculptures today is to remind people that there is plenty to do here in Portland in the wintertime, ” said Jan Beitzer, Executive Director, of the Portland Downtown District. “We hope it will grow and maybe we’ll be like Quebec someday.” Ms. Beitzer was referring to the popular Quebec Winter Carnival which began yesterday and runs until mid-February.

This morning Jeff Day, of Ice Designs – N.H. com., was putting the finishing touches on an ice sculpture located in front of the Portland Museum of Art, Congress Street. As he chizzled in some decorative edges, Daly said the freezer in which he works is 15 degrees. Today’s temperatures were in the 40s, but the blocks of ice were so cold to begin with he was confident they’d last through the Festival which runs until Saturday, February 4th. Earlier in the morning he, Ms. Beitzer and Will Ethridge, events & marketing manager for PDD, installed another sculpture at Post Office Park in the Old Port.

The split snowflake, the event logo, was designed specifically for this Festival and will be used at future festivals said Ms. Beitzer. PDD sent out three RFPs and Teresa LaGrange, a local graphic artist came up with the winning logo. “We wanted an edgy design and I think this has worked well for us.”

RiRa, on Commercial Street, and Bull Feney’s in the Old Port, commissioned Mr. Day to sculpt their logos in ice as well. Those will be installed on Monday in front of their respective businesses. PDD hopes that other businesses in the area will follow suit next year.

“The sculptures are a celebration of Portland’s music, art and community. Jeff Day has created marvelouos designs for both the Portland Harbor Hotel Ice Bar and Portland On Ice,” said Mr. Ethridge.

For more information on the Festival, please visit portlandmaine.com