The NG

Richmond, Indiana —The chainsaws and blowtorches fire up on January 23, 2020, kicking off the 7th annual Meltdown Winter Ice Festival. Downtown Richmond becomes an unforgettable destination where exquisitely detailed carvings, thrilling ice carving competitions, lively winter activities, and fun collide. AND the best part . . . it’s free.

Watch the ice fly as world renowned ice artists, including Richmond’s own Master Ice Carver Andrew Thistlethwaite, use their polished skills and imagination to transform blocks of ice into awe-inspiring crystalline spectacles. Take in the magical creations along Main Street and Elstro Park Plaza. Meet the artists and pose with more than 35 dazzling sculptures. During the festival, over 22 tons of ice will be intricately designed and sculpted into works of art.

Play games made of ice at the Interactive Play Zone -- corn hole, ping pong, chess, and skee-ball are just some of the fun activities to be enjoyed. Other highlights include fire shows, Magical Snowflakes on Main Scavenger Hunt, Frozen Fairy Trail, Frosty Mug Pub Crawl, Lego competition, local food trucks, fireworks, and more.

The most anticipated and crowd pleasing extravaganza during the event are the two exhilarating ice sculpting competitions between pro carvers and 1,200 lbs. of ice. The audience is the judge for this event as these artists go head to head to see who can create the best sculpture in the allotted time.

These high-octane ice carving showdowns will take place Friday, January 24th & Saturday, January 25th. Competitions on both nights start at 7:30 p.m. at Elstro Park Plaza, downtown Richmond.