Mild weather puts Eden Prairie ice castles behind schedule

Ice castles are returning for the second year in a row to Eden Prairie, Minn., but after the fair weather fall and mild winter the state has had up until recently, the owners are forced to open the castles later than hoped. 

The owners had hoped to open Ice Castles, located in Miller Park, to the public on Jan. 4. Now, the earliest the castles will be ready would be Jan. 22. With slick spots everywhere near the sculptures, the owners say it’s simply unsafe to let the public in early.

“We'd see the forecast and say great we have a water turn on date! And then the temperatures rose and it’s been a great emotional rollercoaster,” Manager Nate Bartelt says.

Bartelt and his crew have been working 12-hour days carefully crafting the ice-made masterpiece. Thousands of icicles are being farmed each day in order to create the castle the crew is envisioning.

Eventually there will be LED lights, just like last year, along with several other improvements from 2013, when the company first came to Minnesota. 

To find out when the ice castles will be open, visit or the Ice Castles Facebook page.