Warmer temps create concern for Snowfest organizers, carvers - WNEM TV 5

Warmer temps create concern for Snowfest organizers, carvers

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(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)

The Zehnder's annual Snowfest is off to a much warmer start than previous years.

"It's warm. It's really warm and this is unusual. We've never had it this warm this long," said Christy Dunsmoor, snow carver.

Dunsmoor is in town from Green Bay to compete in the snow carving competition.

"You kind of really have to play how much are you going to carve now, wait until it freezes. You just got to keep rolling with it," Dunsmoor said.

The same goes for Greg Moerner. He is from Milwaukee.

"It's kind of like the Woodstock of snow carving. All the different levels from the high schoolers to the state, nationals and international blocks," he said.

For event organizers, the January thaw has worn out its welcome.

"The warm weather has kind of slowed things down a little bit because they waited. Now they're in full swing. The weather is supposed to get a little bit colder and we are looking forward to another great event," Linda Kelly said.

Kelly has been watching the weather, but in the meantime she said the mild air has its perks.

"It's perfect weather for families, young people, older people to come out. There's not a lot of snow on the ground so you don't have to worry about slipping and falling. There's a lot more parking area," Kelly said.

Dunsmoor said the warmer temps make for a little less strenuous carving.

"The snow is really soft, which makes it really easy to remove the snow so that's what's nice," Dunsmoor said.

Adam Wernecke, another snow carver, wore a T-shirt to the festival. He said there's a reason for his attire.

"I don't want to get all my cold weather stuff all wet and soggy. Then it gets cold and it freezes up," Wernecke said.

He said the weather could alter how plans for his sculpture.

"If things get too warm then we'll of course cut back on some of the overhands and things like that because those could break off and become dangerous," Wernecke said.

While snow carvers in T-shirts is something new this year, the latest chapter in the event marks a new beginning. A team from Argentina has made their way to Frankenmuth for the first time.

"Beautiful. This city is very, very beautiful. I like this city," said Adrianna Oplanich, part of the Argentina team.

The group speaks little English and use translated text messages on their cell phone to communicate. However, they said they received a warm welcome in Mid-Michigan.

"The people is excellent and everybody is excellent, yes," Oplanich said.

As for Wernecke, he said he is glad to see all the different snow carving teams participate. He would just like to see some winter weather come along and join them.

"Stay cold please," he said.

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