Dowagiac Ice Time Festival returns Feb. 3

Published 11:48 am Monday, January 22, 2024

DOWAGIAC — No matter the weather, organizers believe Dowagiac’s 27th Annual Ice Time Festival will be “snow much” fun.

Scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 3, the winter festival – a Greater Dowagiac Chamber of Commerce event – will take place in the central business district, with some activities hosted by businesses in close proximity to downtown. The heart of the festival is the carving of 300 pound blocks of ice by artisans who work from early morning throughout the day creating ice art.

“The Ice Time Festival is a distinctive event that offers families a reason to find fun in our winter season”, said Kris Soenen, Chamber President and festival chairperson.

Festival goers can enter the Frozen Fish Toss Competition, a friendly competition scheduled for noon. Other outdoor events include a Sled Dog Meet and Greet, and the ever popular Hot Spot with bonfire and s’mores. 

This year’s Chili Crawl runs from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Guests can taste restaurant samples for free and vote for their favorite offering. Participating locations include Baker’s Rhapsody, Eagles Lodge, Front Street Crossing/COA, Oak & Ash BBQ, Wood Fire Italian Trattoria and Wounded Minnow Saloon. Two new competitors, Sister Lakes Brewing Company and Lutz’s Drive-in, will also offer samples at host locations downtown. 

A free shuttle bus provided by Heritage Southwest Intermediate School District will transport people from downtown to activities hosted by the following businesses: the Dowagiac Library, Salted Words, the Dowagiac History Museum, and the Eagles Lodge.

Caruso’s Candy & Soda Shop will host their annual Ice Cream Eating Contest at 2:30; arrive early to participate. Beckwith Theater will present the movie “Frozen” for free at 4 pm. Only 100 seats are available for the theater presentation, and will be on a first come first served basis directly before show time. 

Attendees might want to stop in and warm up to drawings, specials and sales being offered by select retailers. 

The annual festival has been underwritten by Lyons Industries, Clark Chapel/Starks Family Funeral Homes, Dowagiac Credit Union, Dowsett Chiropractic Health Center, Family Fare and Who Knew? Consignment.

For a detailed schedule of events visit the Chamber’s Facebook page or its website,