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Local News / Entertainment

Wednesday, 23 January, 2013 9:59 PM

Detroit Tigers caravan to make a stop at the 2013 Zehnder's Snowfest

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Crews setting up for the 2013 Zehnder's Snowfest in Frankenmuth, Mich. on Jan. 17, 2012.

 

by Jason Rzucidlo
americajr@americajr.com

 

|

FRANKENMUTH, Mich. -- The 2013 Zehnder's Snowfest kicked off today with the Michigan Apple Recipe Contest. It features hundreds of snow and ice sculptures, live entertainment and much more. In addition, there will be a fireworks display, a petting zoo and children's activities.

The Detroit Tigers winter caravan is making a stop at the Snowfest on Friday. A free, fan question-and-answer session will take place inside the warming tent behind Zehnder's from 2 to 3 p.m. Detroit Tigers Assistant General Manager Al Avila will join five Tiger coaches, broadcaster Dan Dickerson and 16 members of the 2012 American League Championship team. Players scheduled to attend include Al Alburquerque, Alex Avila, Duane Below, Quintin Berry, Casey Crosby, Darin Downs, Andy Dirks, Prince Fielder, Luis Marte, Melvin Mercedes, Brayan Pena, Jhonny Peralta, Rick Porcello, Luke Putkonen, Bruce Rondon and Drew Smyly.

"We have about 17 players that's going to be a part of that event," said John Shelton, Zehnder's vice president of sales and marketing. "There's no charge for that. We also have a mitten drive that we've partnered with The Salvation Army and Pepsi. Those who bring a pair of mittens or gloves to the event will be eligible to win some prizes--game tickets, Zehnder's overnight stays, Pepsi products. We're looking to having the event with us and I think it's going to be a lot of excitement."

Many people are probably wondering...how will the Snowfest be different from last year?

"We've never tried to be the biggest event in North America, we wanted to have the highest quality," he added. "That's going to remain constant. Also, we think it's a high value family entertainment. There's no cost to come to Zehnder's Snowfest. We think we always want to maintain that ability to have people just come out and enjoy the winter activities and visit Frankenmuth. It really comes down to the changes in the carvings."

Friday is always my favorite day to come down. Can you talk about the music that's being offered?

"Friday we have the 338th Army Country Band and actually Friday is country night," Shelton explained. "We've partnered with local radio station WKCQ. We do karaoke that evening in the beer tent and then we have live entertainment with the band called The Steel Wheels. They draw very well, it's going to be a lot of fun. Saturday is Oldies Day. We have entertainment from literally noon to midnight. There's face painting, our 100-block ice carving exhibition that's going on. Lots to see and do."

What's being offered here for families with kids?

"We have a petting zoo, pony rides--that's $2 per person," the vice president of sales and marketing said. "We have juggling, face painting, a magic show, inflatables. For young and old alike, there's a lot to do here."

Please tell me more about the chef's hot food competition and tasting.

"That's how we conclude Snowfest every year," he answered. "That's on Monday, Jan. 28 and that's $30 per person. The proceeds go to the Head Start program in Genesee and Saginaw counties. That is a competition through the ACF, the American Culinary Federation, the Flint-Saginaw chapter. You're going to see some of the best chefs in Saginaw and Genesee county participate in that. People buy tickets and they're going to get to eat everything that they prepare."

Will ice and snow sculptures by students from metro Detroit be on display?

"We have several teams not on the ice sculpting side, more on the snow sculpting side," Shelton explained. "We do have colleges, that's the National Collegiate. We have Henry Ford Community College, we have Macomb Community College, I believe we have Schoolcraft. We have area college students participating in the Collegiate event."

How long will the ice sculptures along Main Street be shown?

"That's up to mother nature to be honest," the vice president of sales and marketing said. "We'll set the ice carvings up throughout town typically Thursday night, depending on the weather, no later than early Friday morning. They will stay up as long as Mother Nature allows them to stay up. We've been lucky as long as 10 days afterwards. Based on the forecast, I think they will be up at least three to five days after the event because we're still experiencing cold temperatures."

The 22nd annual festival is now underway through Jan. 28 in Frankenmuth, Mich. All of the fun wraps up with the chef's hot food competition and tasting.

For more information about the 2013 Zehnder's Snowfest, visit www.zehnders.com.

Related Story: PHOTOS: 21st Annual Zehnder's Snowfest along Main Street in Frankenmuth, MI

 

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

A close-up of workers getting a large block of snow ready to be shaped.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Snow Fest sign in front of Bavarian Inn Restaurant

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

The Collegiate Ice Sculpture Competition will be located in this fenced area.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Snowfest banner on a lamppost

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Larger-than-life snow sculptures will be located in the Bavarian Inn parking lot.

 

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