Mohican Ice Festival is a cool winter wonderland

Mohican Ice Festival is a cool winter wonderland

Image Credit: File

The weather outside may be frightful, or it could be a balmy 60 degrees, but regardless of what the weather may bring, the Mohican Ice Festival will roll into Loudonville Jan. 7-9, and all kinds of winter fun will come together to create a family-friendly day.

The event will once again feature the talents of ice carving U.S. Olympian Aaron Costic’s equally gifted Elegant Ice carving crew. The joy of watching large blocks of ice spring to life under the talented and artistic hands of the ice carving crew is always a thrill for adults and kids alike.

Whether it is turning the ice into a beautiful swan, a playful puppy or a diving dolphin or perhaps carving a child’s name into a piece of ice, Costic’s crew is always entertaining.

“They are so entertaining,” said Valerie Sprang, executive director at Loudonville Chamber of Commerce. “I think one of the neatest things is how they interact with the crowd.”

Depending on the weather, Elegant Ice will place premade ice sculptures throughout the downtown area and Central Park, either Friday evening or Saturday morning. Gazing at those alone would be worth the visit, but Costic’s crew also will present ice sculpting demonstrations Saturday at the top of each hour beginning at 11 a.m. with the final demonstration beginning at 4 p.m.

This event was held in Ashland for many years before making its way to Loudonville, where it has been taking place now for nearly two decades.

“It’s amazing to watch the ice take shape as they carve,” Sprang said.

In addition to the demonstrations, the ice sculptors will carve a child’s name into the ice for free.

While ice is the big drawing card, there will be more than just the ice carving. There also will be a miniature model train expo that will take place Friday through Sunday in the fair building located at 165 N. Water St.

On Friday from 4-8 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m., a group of miniature train aficionados will set up their tracks, trains, and all the decorative landscape, buildings and people to create miniature scenes with the trains being the focal point. Fun for kids and adults, families will want to take in this enjoyable and relaxing atmosphere, talk with the owners and perhaps get a chance to operate the trains themselves.

“The displays are really incredible,” Sprang said. “It’s a unique opportunity for people to see these fascinating train sets in action, and the operators are always fun to chat with because they have such a passion for what they do.”

On Friday there will be a “how to make a walking stick” demonstration at Mohican State Park Class A Campground at 1 p.m. while Tyler Chaffee will perform on stage at The Ugly Bunny Winery from 6-9 p.m. There also will be a showing of "Spider Man No Way Home" at the Ohio Theater starting at 7 p.m.

Saturday will feature a vintage snowmobile collection from noon to 4 p.m., and the American Legion will host a poker run from 1-4 p.m. In addition, the Cleo Redd Fisher Museum and the Workman Cabin will be open for tours on Saturday.

“Both buildings provide a look at the history of Loudonville,” Sprang said. The buildings are located next to Central Park.

Saturday also will have a la carte lunch to go at the United Methodist Church, a program at the Wolf Creek Grist Miller titled “A Look at the Grist Mill” from 1-3 p.m., Kimberly Ferrell performing at The Ugly Bunny from 6-9 p.m. and "Spider Man No Way Home" again featured at 7 p.m.

On Sunday, Jan. 9, the sculptures will remain on display, if Mother Nature doesn’t melt them, and the 16th annual Mohican Winter Hike will kick off at 10 a.m. on the Mohican State trails. "Spider Man No Way Home" also will be featured once again at 2 p.m.

“There’s a lot of entertainment filling the weekend,” Sprang said.

Admission to the event is free, and whether it is 2 degrees or 62 degrees, the ice will be on tap for plenty of mesmerizing fun for the whole family.