Snow Park Fun Facts
How much snow does it take to build the Snow Park?
Between the sculpture blocks, exhibition sculpture, and snow slide, we use at least 50,000 cubic feet of snow. That’s enough to cover the whole Kidway (the Snow Park site north of the restrooms) in at least 5" of snow!
Where do you get the snow?
We use as much natural snow (harvested from the Fairgrounds) as possible and mix it with man-made snow to make up any deficit. (For the last few years, we’ve had to use all man-made snow.)
How do you build the snow blocks for the sculptures?
We use wooden forms, fill them with snow, and pack that snow down as hard as we can. Front loaders scoop loads of snow into the forms and teams of people use shovels, feet, and tampers to break up and pack down each load before the next is added. In recent years, an industrial-sized snow auger has also been used to help mix snow and and blow it into the forms for packing.
How heavy are the snow sculptures?
Very heavy! One cubic foot (a square block that measures 1' x 1' x 1') of compacted snow weighs 15-20 pounds. The initial 8' x 8' x 8' block equals 512 cubic feet and weighs between 7,680 and 10,240 pounds. That’s 4-5 tons! The finished sculptures weigh less than that because a lot of the initial snow is removed, but they still generally weigh well over a ton.
How big is the snow slide?
In 2016, the snow slide was 16 feet tall at the top and more than 300 feet long. Except for the scaffolding supporting the platform at the top, the slide is made entirely of packed snow.
Who gets to enter the Minnesota State Snow Sculpting Competition or Amateur Snow Sculpting Contest?
Anyone age 18 or older may enter the competition or the contest, regardless of prior competition experience. The team captain must be a Minnesota resident. Complete details and entry information can be found here for the state competition and here for the amateur contest.
How can I get involved?
It takes hundreds of volunteers and thousands of sponsor dollars to make the Snow Park happen. There are many excellent opportunities for individuals, groups, and businesses to help out while having a great time. Learn about our volunteer and sponsor opportunities.
The creation of a snow block