Downtown Ithaca invites you to attend one of its greatest wintertime spectacles — the annual Ice Festival. This beloved three-day, multifaceted celebration, now on its 11th year, pairs a nationally-sanctioned and highly competitive ice carving competition featuring some of the country’s best carvers with a day-long chowder cook-off where local restaurants aim to garner public votes for their freshly prepared stock concoctions.
The multi-day event kicks off Thursday, Dec. 7 from 5 to 9 p.m., with the opening of the ice bar, a serving station made completely out of ice blocks, on The Commons. Guests will be able to enjoy a sampling of frosty beers from Dryden’s Bacchus Brewing Company and a variety of tasty wines from Treleaven Winery based out of Kings Ferry. Ice bar guests can also sip non-alcoholic hot cocoa during this happy hour style activity. At 6 p.m., Nate the Great entertains the crowds with his impressive juggling act and Cosmic Karma Fire Dance returns to astonish the audience with its flame-fueled performance.