Looking for a fun and memorable way to spend your winter weekend? Watch ice carvers transform blocks of ice while enjoying savory chili at the sixth annual Carmel Festival of Ice. A schedule of events can be found on the Festival of Ice website.
Festival of Ice Schedule of Events
On Friday, January 20, 2023, top ice carvers from around the Midwest will create ice sculptures around the Carmel Arts & Design District from 4-7 pm. Ice sculptures can be found on Main Street in front of Anthony’s Chop House, Agave Bar & Grill, Muldoon’s, Petos, The Pint Room, and Woodys Library Restaurant. Sculptures will remain on display until they melt.
On Saturday, January 21, the winter festivities will move to the Carter Green, located outside of the Palladium. Watch ice carving professionals create giant ice sculptures from 10 am-5 pm. Visitors can vote for their favorite ice sculptures. While there, taste and vote from a variety of chilis at the Carmel Fire Department Chili Cook Off from 11 am-1 pm.
The ice sculpting competitors return to the Carter Green on Sunday, January 22 for the grand finale. The ice carvers will participate in a fast-paced “Quick Carve,” a tournament style competition from 10 am until 2 pm. Winners will be announced directly following the competition. Audience participation is encouraged throughout and the program is exciting for all ages.
The professional ice sculptors in this year’s competition include Shannon Gerasimchik, Benjamen Goebel, Jim Houser, Stephan Koch, Dan Rebholz and Matthew Stoddart.
The Ice at Carter Green rink will be open for skating all weekend. Advance tickets are required. Visit TheIceAtCarterGreen.com to purchase skating tickets in advance.
The Carmel Festival of Ice is a unique way to celebrate the winter weather. Stop by to enjoy the artwork being created from power tools and blocks of ice, cheer on your favorite Midwest ice sculptor, enjoy a cup of chili and go ice skating with the family.
Festival of Ice
Carmel offers free parking on the street, marked parking lots, and various public parking garages. Public parking can be found in the Arts & Design District, Carmel City Center, Midtown and by the Palladium. A map of specific parking areas can be found on their website.
Festival of Ice Accommodations
Public restrooms are available along the Arts and Design District and in Midtown. Look for signs along Rangeline Road, Main Street, and along the Monon Trail. The Carmel Arts and Design map includes public restrooms and parking.
Activities at the Festival of Ice
Want to explore Carmel after visiting the Festival of Ice? Walk on the Monon Trail to Midtown and challenge your family to some outdoor games. Equipment is provided for games of billiards, cornhole, and ping pong. If the weather is too chilly, come back on a warmer day to enjoy live music, movies at Midtown and more. Check out the Midtown Plaza website for a schedule of events.
Food at the Festival of Ice
If you are looking for a sweet treat or quick bite to tide your crew over during the Festival of Ice, there are plenty of options in Carmel.
When looking at ice sculptures, it is important to have a warm beverage option. 1832 Brew features a full espresso bar, hot chocolate, chai, tea, smoothies and more. This coffee shop is located inside the SubZero Nitrogen Ice Cream Shop, so parents can grab a cup of coffee while kids can create their own flavor of ice cream, a win-win!
Located at the intersection of Main Street and the Monon Trail, Bazbeaux Pizza is an Indy favorite. Dine in or place a to-go order for one of their thin crust pizzas with unique toppings. A gluten-free, vegan crust is available, however all pizzas are made in a flour-filled environment.
A family favorite, this local burger place is a great place to grab lunch. Bub’s Burgers is located inside the yellow house off the Monon Trail on Main Street. Bub’s Burgers feature hand-pattied, flame grilled burgers made from 100% ground chuck. The menu also features hand-dipped milkshakes if you have room for dessert. If someone in your family is a fan of food challenges, try the Big Ugly Challenge to earn a spot on the wall of fame.
BOBER TEA & MOCHI DONUTS
If you have a tween or teen, you are likely familiar with boba tea. The Carmel Bober Tea and Mochi Donut location recently opened and has been well received. Tea options include hot teas, fruit teas, Bober milk teas, and espresso drinks. Mochi donut flavors rotate every week. The store walls are bright pink, covered in flowers, pink hearts with a pink horse, perfect for photos. Bober Tea has dairy free drink options.
CAKE BAKE SHOP
For a memorable meal, make reservations at this glamorous bakery located in the Carmel City Center. Kids and growns-ups alike will swoon over the sparkling lights, seasonal decor, and sparkling touches. If you want to try the amazing cake or food, but do not have reservations, you can place an order at the to-go counter. It is still a fun experience to walk through the bakery line and select layered cakes to go. Gluten free options include cake, brownies and macarons.
MARY’S MOUNTAIN COOKIES
Warning. If you give a child one of these cookies, they might ask you to come back another time. These cookies are HUGE and come in a variety of flavors. They also offer ice cream cookies and cookie dough, available in the freezer. Gluten free cookies are available in the freezer, but the store does not guarantee to be a gluten-free kitchen.
NO LABEL AT THE TABLE
One of my favorite local shops is No Label at the Table. All menu items are gluten and dairy free and change daily. The bakery was opened with a mission to serve the community and provide employment opportunities for people on the autism spectrum.
SUBZERO NITROGEN ICE CREAM
SubZero, with their unique twist of watching ice cream being made before your eyes. You select your base, flavor, and mix-in, then the science (magic) happens with a blast of liquid nitrogen as the liquid treat becomes a frozen dessert.
SUN KING BREWERY
With a menu ranging from roasted brussel sprouts to pizza to a chocolate chip ice cream sandwich, there is bound to be something to please most anyone in your crew at Sun King Brewery in Midtown Carmel. In addition to a full food menu, Sun King also features a variety of beverages. Vegan options available. Outside of Sun Kings is Midtown Plaza, featuring several outdoor games.