MINNEAPOLIS (FOX 9) - After spoiling us with above-average temperatures for several weeks, Mother Nature's mood changed on Saturday. This week, the Twin Cities has dipped down to single-digit temperatures for the first time since Jan. 9.
Organizers at St. Paul's winter carnival did not let that stop them from making the most of a popular tradition.
"You never know what you're going to run into, so we usually have two plans, one for warm weather and one for cold weather, and we took a chance on this one," ice sculptor Rob Graham said.
Saturday's weather was ideal for Graham and his fellow sculptors, because when temperatures dip below zero, the ice becomes too brittle to work with. Yet when temperatures rise above freezing, the ice tends to fall apart. "We like this, this is just perfect today, a little bit overcast, cold enough," Graham said.
In the crowds, among hundreds of people fixated on all of the beautiful sculptures, Mike Zieman might've been one of the warmest people in attendance. "My feet are warm," Zieman said. "Everything on me is warm."
After looking at the forecast on Saturday morning, Zieman knew he wouldn't be able to go anywhere without bundling up. Accordingly, he wrapped himself up in layer after layer of hunting gear before donning gloves made out of squirrel fur.
"I'm feeling real hot, really hot," Zieman said. "I'm sweating inside, so it's kind of like a spring day on a jog."
With the bitterly cold weather outside, it was no wonder hundreds more people packed inside the Landmark Center to participate in a jigsaw puzzle contest.
Then, to cap off this year's chilly winter carnival, organizers brought the heat with bursts of fire along a parade early in the afternoon.