Various bits of flotsam that washed up on our computers, before we moved to a better blog system in November 2004. Now a repository for YouTube videos and testing new tools. Go to for more recent content.

Thursday, April 22, 2004

Ice sculptures

Amazingly intricate Asian ice sculptures: gallery found here. I'd go, but sounds a little cold, and I just escaped Chicago winter....

The temperature in Harbin reaches forty below zero, both farenheit and centigrade, and stays below freezing nearly half the year.  The city is actually further north than notoriously cold Vladivostok, Russia, just 300 miles away.  So what does one do here every winter?  Hold an outdoor festival, of course!  Rather than suffer the cold, the residents of Harbin celebrate it, with an annual festival of snow and ice sculptures and competitions.  The festival officially runs from January 5 through February 15, but often opens a week early and runs into March, since it's usually still cold enough.  This is the amazing sculpture made of snow greeting visitors to the snow festival in 2003.

The ice festival, a few miles away from the snow festival, is anything but dull and colorless.  Crowds flocking to the entrance are greeted by dance music booming in the distance, as if at an outdoor pop concert.  And bright neon colors shine everywhere, buried within huge blocks of ice forming structures as high as thirty meters, such as this huge structure beyond the entryway.  You can just make out people standing atop its blue and red stairway.

crossposted at my other blog

Now playing in iTunes: This Charming Man, from the album Hatful Of Hollow by Smiths (released 1984)


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