O'Grady Pond Too
Home of the brilliant "Arctic Diamond."
Harvesting the ice is always an amazing feat. Protecting the ice as it leaves its pond home to meet the colder temperatures of the open air means giving it time to adjust to the temperature so that it doesn't fracture or crack.
The thickness of the ice depends on the winter temperatures, which is what makes our event stand above the rest. Fairbanks' extreme temperatures allow the ice to grow several feet thick during the coldest months.
Before the event, volunteers work long days in sometimes extreme temperatures to pull nearly 1000 blocks of ice from the pond. Imagine gingerly walking the ice's slippery surface, maneuvering around heavy equipment, to move these giant blocks, hoping the chains on the saw will last as long as possible to keep the work going.
Over 80 feet deep, the new pond makes for incredible clarity, producing gorgeous competition ice and attracting sculptors from around the world to be a part of the World Ice Art Championships at Ice Alaska's "George Horner Ice Art Park."
O'Grady Pond Too is named after one of our most humble and dedicated volunteers, Andy O'Grady, who has been pulling ice from the pond for this event for many years. After moving down the road 1 mile to our new location, our new ice reserve is named "Too," meaning "Also."
More on the history of the harvest...