High on Ice to broaden its spectrum

Photo:  An example of what coloured ice can look like – FSJ Arts Council

By Jon Zacks

 

Arts advocates in Fort St. John are planning on adding a little colour to the 2011 High on Ice festival.

Representatives from the Fort St. John Arts Council appeared before City Council on Tuesday night, to share their plans for the next High on Ice event, and to talk about some of the challenges faced in the 2010 event.

Tara O’Donnell and Lisa Bush said High on Ice 2010 brought the biggest-yet turnout to the Energetic City, and more coverage than ever before. They say it contributed to community pride, active lifestyles, and employment in the region, as well as providing a major boost to winter tourism.

Some changes the Arts Council would like to see for next time include:

· Facing the ice slides (or at least the one for small children) towards the hospitality tent, so that parents can keep an eye on their kids while huddling up to heaters and hot chocolate.
· Getting funding allocated from the City earlier, so that the money will be available for cash prizes and other costs.
· Providing a power supply at the front of Centennial park, to enhance the safety of carvers using power tools.
· Improving lighting at Centennial Park and opening the concession at night, to give the public more opportunity to visit the festival in the evenings.

O’Donnell also described how organizers plan on injecting ‘coloured ice’ into the festival in 2011. She says ‘coloured ice’ is quite a simple, but aesthetically pleasing effect. Moreover, for around $3,000, O’Donnell says organizers could provide a ‘coloured ice’ workshop to local students.

The arts council is responsible for the ice and snow events at the festival, which includes bringing in the professional carvers, and organizing the various competitions. The overall budget for the Ice and Snow Event at High on Ice 2011 is projected at $116,100.

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