Walleye frozen inside St. Paul ice palace not an accident, organizers say

Image 1 of 3

For those headed to the St. Paul Winter Carnival over the next few weeks, the 70-foot ice palace is the coup de gras of a celebration years in the making.

Made from locally-sourced ice from Green Lake near Spicer, Minn., this year's giant castle features more than 4,000 blocks--but one of these isn't quite like the rest. 

There, amid the throng of people strolling along the outer wall of the frozen building, sits a Minnesota walleye perched just below eye level deep inside a block of ice. His inclusion in this year's festivities, however, is anything but accidental.

Organizers say it's a tradition that traces its roots back to 2004, when the last big ice castle was built for the annual Winter Carnival hosted in St. Paul.

The fish was caught on Lake of the Woods by a local angler and inserted into the ice block using "one of the crew's little tricks," according to organizer Dan Stolz. 

A "name the fish contest" will also be held, with the winner taking home the block of ice and the walleye frozen inside.