St. Joseph is renowned as a four-season water wonderland with Lake Michigan and nearby rivers and inland lakes. But this time of year the city’s focus turns to frozen water during its annual Magical Ice Fest presented by Silver Beach Pizza, Feb. 5-7. Ice competitions, a SnowBiz Scavenger Hunt and Ice Interactives are just some of the reasons to bring family and friends to this frosty, fun-filled weekend.
Amy Zapal, executive director at St. Joseph Today, summed it up, “If you need a cure for the winter blues, this is it!” She added that local hotels turn it into a great mid-winter getaway for families with children or a romantic pre-Valentine weekend for couples.
The winter festivities start Friday with the Professional Individual Carving Competition, presented by Caffe Tosi, along Pleasant St. from 5:00pm-8:00pm. Watch as carvers magically turn frozen blocks into works of art. Visitors can also participate in the SnowBiz Scavenger Hunt, presented by Berrien Community Foundation, all weekend long. Stop in the St. Joseph Today Welcome Center, 301 State St., to pick up a map and start your search! Completing the hunt puts participants in the running for a $25 St. Joseph Today gift certificate good at more than 80 locations.
The fun continues Saturday with Professional Team Carving Competition along State St. from 7:30am-4:30pm. Watch as teams of two transform eight blocks of ice into frosty creations.
At 9:00am on Saturday, runners and walkers can melt a few pounds in the annual Ice Fest 5K Chocolate Walk/Run presented by the Sunset Coast Striders. For more information about this chip-timed event and a complete list of sponsors, visit thedriven.net/event-registration/site.race_reg/eid/39004234568?&.
Attendees will also enjoy Ice Interactives on Saturday from 11:00am-4:00pm. Featuring fan favorites the Frozen Fish Toss, presented by The Livery, and Ice Tic-Tac-Toe, presented by BIGGBY Coffee of St. Joseph and Zoup! of St. Joseph.
This year’s event and interactive sponsors include: Silver Beach Pizza, The Boulevard Inn & Bistro, Beaudoin Electrical Construction, Southwestern Michigan Tourist Council, The Inn at Harbor Shores, Caffe Tosi, Cook Nuclear, Holt Bosse, Honor Credit Union, Schultz Roofing, Southwest Michigan Regional Chamber, Berrien Community Foundation, BIGGBY Coffee of St. Joseph, Zoup! of St. Joseph, The Livery and Mid-West Family Broadcasting. This year’s block sponsors include: Kilwins, Olive Cart, Pier 1000, Silver Harbor Brewing Co., Spectrum Lakeland Health, Sturgis Bank | St. Joseph Banking Center, The Buck Burgers & Brew, Tom & Judy Gawlick, Vail Rubber Works, DK Boutique, G&M Variety, The John DeVries Agency, SWMI Brew Tours, Fully Alive Chiropractic, Michigan Pizza Hut, White Pine Winery, Abonmarche. Additional sponsor support can be found at MagicalIceFest.com.
Catch these upcoming winter and spring events:
Countdown to Summer: Now through May 26.
March Mannequins: Friday, March 12 (7:00pm-8:30pm)
Zapal said, “Additionally, St. Joseph Today invites the community to support SWMI businesses and restaurants during Countdown to Summer for a chance to win weekly prizes.” Zapal goes on to say, “While we’re holding out for cooler temps during Ice Fest weekend, we’re also counting the days down to sunshine and warmers days here in Michigan’s Great Southwest.”
For every $25 spent (one time or cumulative purchases) you will receive one entry. Qualifying purchases must be made at an SJT member location between January 1, 2021 – May 26, 2021. Participants can earn double entries on purchases made during Ice Fest weekend February 5-7, 2021. One winner will be drawn weekly, February 11, 2021 – May 27, 2021. Winners will receive a $50 gift certificate from various SJT members.
To receive an entry form, please present receipt(s) of purchases to an SJT staff member at the Welcome Center located in downtown St. Joseph. Visit stjoetoday.com/countdown for more information.
St. Joseph Today is a 501(c)(3) membership-based organization dedicated to developing and promoting events and businesses in St. Joseph, Mich. and its surrounding communities. For more information about upcoming events and details call St. Joseph Today at (269) 985 1111 or visit stjoetoday.com.