"Ice Castles on the Green"
December 2011

Colony Christmas is an old fashioned three-day celebration of Christmas past and present in Palmer that features horse-drawn sleigh rides, reindeer, gingerbread houses, holiday carolers, and a dazzling display of ice sculptures. As part of the celebration, the Valley Arts Alliance produced their fourth annual Ice Castles on the Green! event on Saturday, December 10, 2011.

Ice Castles on the Green consists of unique winter sculptures created from blocks of ice by some of the Valley’s best artists…

Kathy Zeitz of Wasilla makes beautiful sculptures of ice in her winter gardens, using colored water that she freezes in unique moulds. Her work has been displayed at all previous Valley Arts Alliance Ice Castles on the Green events. Linda Lockhart in Big Lake also sculpts ice, and some of her ice gardens feature 17-foot illuminated sculpted angels. Les Brake in Willow fills his “Coyote Garden” with fanciful ice sculptures and wonderful blue ice pagodas.

These are but a few of the many artists in our Valley who will be creating wonderful ice sculptures this winter. The Valley Arts Alliance is always looking for other talented artists and individuals to help us create unique ice sculptures at our Ice Castles on the Green.

Also on Saturday, the Mat-Su Community Chorus was caroling at 4:30 and 6pm on the Green in the midst of our Ice Castles on the Green.

And in case you’re wondering about the location, the Green is the area in Palmer known as the “quad” or “square” located between the Borough Office, the Dahlia Street Market, and the Colony Inn.

The Dahlia Street Market was built in the mid-1930’s as the colony’s Trading Post and Post Office. Palmer’s Mayor DeLena Johnson and her husband Steve purchased the abandoned building a few years ago and restored it to glory. Now it hosts Palmer’s famous restaurant “Rusty’s” (where everyone was invited in for a “warm up” on Saturday afternoon during the Ice Castles on the Green).

The Colony Inn was the former residence for teachers who came north to Alaska with the original colonists in the mid-1930’s. It was restored several years ago by Janet Kincaid, and now serves as Palmer’s treasured Colony Inn, a quaint and charming hotel.

Palmer has a wonderful home-town appeal, and is truly Alaska at its best! So come join us next year when we create another wonderful Ice Castles on the Green!