"Ice Castles on the Green"
December 2009

December is the month for ICE CASTLES! During this month’s Colony Christmas celebration in Palmer, artists of the Valley Arts Alliance displayed a collection of ice sculptures on the GREEN, the area in Palmer located between the Borough Office, the Colony Inn, and the Dahlia Street Market.

Colony Christmas is a well-loved old-fashioned Christmas celebration that features horse-drawn and reindeer sleigh rides, gingerbread houses, and Christmas carolers. Colony Christmas only lasts one weekend, but in an effort to extend the holiday celebration longer, the Valley Arts Alliance exhibit ICE CASTLES ON THE GREEN runs most of the month of December.

The Dahlia Street Market, located at 320 E. Dahlia Street, was originally built as a trading post in FDR’s New Deal Colony Project in 1935. It first served as a US Post Office and dry goods store, and in later years it became a civic center, recreation hall, shooting range, health care center, and finally a pharmacy. The building was abandoned in the 1980’s and was facing demolition until DeLena and Steve Johnson rescued it and restored it to its former glory.

On Saturday, December 12, a team of Valley Arts Alliance artists consisting of Kathy Zeitz, Nan Potts, Randy Robinson, Carmen Summerfield and many other Valley Arts Alliance members created these wonderful ice sculptures. As daylight turned to dusk, the Mat-Su Community Chorus treated everyone to a wonderful evening of caroling.

The Valley Arts Alliance plans to create the ICE CASTLES ON THE GREEN event beside the Dahlia Street Market every December, in the hopes that it will become another well-loved feature of Colony Christmas.