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WNIJ's summary of news items around our state.

Rockford Snow-Sculpting Competition Postponed Despite Snow Machines

WNIJ/Victor Yehling

The annual Illinois Snow Sculpting Competition in Rockford has been postponed. That’s despite Rockford Park District efforts to bring in snow machines for the competition.

About 20 degrees Fahrenheit is the ideal temperature for this type of event so sculptures can hold their shape and snow can stick around. However, the competition is expected to take place in Rockford’s Sinnissippi Park with temperatures as high as 45.

Now, the competition – which originally was scheduled to start this week – has been postponed to later this month due to weather concerns.

“This is not the first time the snow sculpting competition’s had to deal with warm temperatures,” John Beck, with the Rockford Park District, said. “A lot of these sculptors have got a lot of experience on … when to carve and what to hold off.”

Previously, the snow was made by the airport and trucked over to the park, but Beck says that’s not ideal.

“You know, that quality of snow is even worse, because usually it sat around for a little while,” Beck said. “When you’re shoveling something up off of pavement, you know, you can imagine you’re going to pick up some foreign material as well.”

Event officials didn’t want to cancel or postpone the event at first, so they brought in snow-making machines from Bartlett for about $5,000. The Park District canceled the contest anyway as an added precaution. 

More than 25 teams will be participating in the competition.