Back from its hiatus, the International Snow Sculpture Championships are returning to Breckenridge! Twelve teams from six different countries will be creating beautiful works of wintery art over the course of five days- created entirely from snow and using only hand tools. These massive snow sculptures begin as 20 ton blocks of snow and end as an incredibly intricate and creative outdoor showcase of artwork. During the viewing week, the sculptures are illuminated from 4:30p.m.-11:00p.m. nightly, transforming downtown Breckenridge into an enchanting wonderland!
The International Snow Sculpture Championships have been taking place in Breckenridge for over thirty years but the tradition predates the competition. As far back as the seventies, as part of the Ullr fest tradition, amateur teams would create snow sculptures out of heaps of snow in front of shops and restaurants on Main Street. One team, named Carvin’ Marvin and the Snowflakes, participated in the tradition, won several years running and in 1985 were asked to go to nationals. The team started competing professionally, made friends and contacts and decided to bring artists to Breckenridge, creating the first International Snow Sculpture Championships in 1990.
The pristine snow is made by Breckenridge Resort, trucked to the Riverwalk Center and stomped into ten by ten by twelve foot blocks. The concepts are first created as a clay model and then brought to life in snow by utilizing handmade tools. The participants praise the competition as being fun and enjoyable with an atmosphere of sharing and collaborating.
This event is a must-see in Breckenridge. Stop by the Riverwalk Center to see the magic for yourself!