The annual Ice & Fire Festival has been modified for security reasons from COVID-19. However, 55 ice sculptures, large and small, are on display and can be viewed in locations across the city.
HARRISBURG, PA. – Note: The video above is from the modified Lititz Fire & Ice Festival that took place last month.
Harrisburg's annual Ice & Fire Festival will return this weekend, albeit with a new name and format to protect everyone during the COVID-19 pandemic, the city said on Wednesday.
Similar to the changes made to the Fire & Ice Festival in Lititz, Lancaster County last month, the annual Harrisburg ice sculpture event has been tweaked to ensure that visitors can see 55 ice sculptures, large and small, across the city, while they are safe.
The modified event, now called "Ice Cream in the Castle", takes place Friday through Sunday. According to the organizers, the sculptures can be viewed on City Island, in the city center, in Midtown, on Lake Italy, in Shipoke and in Reservoir Park.
"M&T Bank is once again honored to work with the City of Harrisburg to bring this year's festival to the community," said Nora Habig, M&T regional president for central and western Pennsylvania. "The name of the festival may have changed this year, but we know the event will again be an important way to celebrate our community and support local businesses."
Due to the safety concerns of COVID-19, not all normal attractions such as the ice slide, ice rink, live artist market, stage performances or fire pit lounge will be shown at the festival, according to the organizers.
What it will have are ice sculptures – and lots of them.
Ice sculpture designs this year include the Italian Sea Duck, Man on the Moon, Broad Street Market Logo, Capitol Dome, Shipoke Sheena, Dinosaur, and Carousel Horse, according to organizers.
The event begins on Friday with a drive through experience on City Island from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. This experience will include 14 lighted ice sculptures, live ice carvings, Frozen characters, stilt walkers, musician Dave McCullough and Susquehanna Dance Academy.
All participants must remain in their vehicles for the drive-through experience – according to the organizer, no bicycles or walking aids are permitted.
The ice sculptures shown in the passage will also be available on Saturday and Sunday.
On Saturday, ice sculptures can be viewed in locations across the city from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. The ice sculptures are illuminated from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Eat in the Streets offers a unique outdoor dining experience from 12pm to 7pm. on the second street. Participating restaurants include Aroogas, Federal Taphouse, JP Lovedrafts Micropub, Stocks on 2nd, and Zembies.
Themed cocktails are also offered, or attendees can warm up with a cocoa or coffee drink while looking at the sculptures.
Ice sculptures are available on Sundays from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
The sculptures stay in place until they melt.
An interactive map with GPS coordinates for all sculptures is also available on the event website.
Those attending the festival can take part in an ice sculpture scavenger hunt to win gift cards from participating companies in Harrisburg. COVID-19 security measures such as social distancing markings and face covering requirements will be introduced.
Wearing a mask is required if sustained physical distance cannot be maintained in accordance with government mandates, the organizers said.
"We're thrilled to have a safe and free outdoor event," said Eric Papenfuse, Harrisburg Mayor. "We look forward to bringing ice sculptures to neighborhoods this year so families can get some fresh air and exercise while enjoying the ice art."
Parking and road closures
City island – Free parking on City Island Downtown Daily parking in the Market Square Garage is $ 10. Parking on Park Harrisburg Street is free on Saturdays after 5:00 p.m. in designated city centers and free all day on Sundays. With the code "LUVHBG" in the Parkmobile app you can park for 4 hours free of charge in the city center on Saturday before 5:00 p.m. The garages on Walnut and Chestnut Street are open. Italian lake – Free parking in 3rd and Shamokin St car parks courtesy of the Zembo Shrine. Midtown Free parking at Greenworks Development Parking Lot 2 and 4 on Reily & Logan Street. Free parking in the Benjamin Franklin Elementary School car park at 1205 N 6th St. Reservoir Park – Free parking in the parking lot on Reservoir Drive. Shipoke – Street parking is available. The parking garage on Marktplatz is 800 meters away. Road closures – 2nd Street will be closed from Locust to Pine Street on Saturday, March 6th, 10am to 9pm for al fresco dining.
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