PHOTO STORY: Cooler weather on the horizon for Hunter Ice Festival
Published 3:30 pm Thursday, January 13, 2022
NILES — Thursday, ice carvers were hard at work sculpting frozen masterpieces for this weekend’s Hunter Ice Festival in downtown Niles. With cooler temps on the way, it looks like their temporary work will stick around long enough to be viewed by thousands.
According to the National Weather Service, cold winter weather is headed to the 49120-zip code, which encompasses the city of Niles, just in time for the city’s annual Hunter Ice Festival, taking place Friday through Sunday.
During the day Friday, the weather is forecasted to be mostly cloudy with a high near 29 degrees. There will be a chance of flurries before 10 a.m. and northeast winds of 5 to 10 miles per hour.
Friday night is expected to be mostly cloudy with a low around 13 degrees and northeast winds of 10 to 15 miles per hour.
Saturday is forecasted to be partly sunny with a high near 21 degrees and northeast winds around 10 miles per hour.
Saturday night is expected to be mostly clear, with a low around 8 degrees.
Sunday is expected to be sunny with a high near 27 degrees, while Sunday night is set to be partly cloudy with a low around 16 degrees.
This year marks the 18th anniversary of the Hunter Ice Festival, which sees dozens of expertly carved ice sculptures placed around downtown in addition to other activities.
The festival is named in honor of Henry and Lemont Hunter, who moved to Niles from Wisconsin in 1898 to open the Hunter Ice Brothers Company on Barron Lake, the first known ice business and the first industry in Howard Township, according to Niles History Center.
Several events are planned for the annual festival, including:
7:30 p.m. Friday — Fire and Ice Kickoff, located behind Wonderland Cinema
10 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday — Cocoa and Coronation Continental Breakfast with the “Frozen”
Sisters, located at The Grand LV. Tickets are $30 and registration is required.
10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday — Multi-Block sculptures carved live throughout downtown
10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday — Hunter Photo Booth, located at On Base Productions. Prints are $2 apiece.
11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday — Shelf Life Bookstore open
2 to 3:30 p.m. Saturday — LifePlan of Niles BabyCakes Cupcake Contest and Fundraiser, located at The Rage
2 to 5 p.m. Saturday — Michigan Beer and Wine Tasting, located at Front Street Pizza Pub
7: 30 p.m. Saturday — Speed Carving, located at the Riverfront Park Amphitheater
All Day Saturday — Children’s Sledding Hill, located at the 400 block of Main/South Side
All Day Saturday — Interactive Ice Park, located on Main between the bridge and Front Street
All Day Sunday — Children’s Sledding Hill, located at the 400 block of Main/South Side
All Day Sunday — Interactive Ice Park, located on Main between the bridge and Front Street