It takes a lot to get this girl to leave the house when the temperature dips much below forty-five degrees, let alone to don a big, blue parka, fuzzy gloves and fur-lined boots and walking willingly into a nine-degree dome of ice. Though, you have to admit, I do kinda rock the fur-lined boots.
If there is one event that can achieve this feat, it can only be the Gaylord National and their annual ICE! attraction. I am a big fan of the Gaylord and would go even if it weren’t a special event. This just happened to be Media and Blogger Family Day, with the added bonus of Shrek the Halls in ICE! Yeah, I’m up for that. Plus, they have cool treats like this …
Chocolate chip cookie and Shrek-inspired cake pop. Yes, that cookie is really as thick as it looks. There was even ogre-colored milk to go along with it (it was family day, after all).
So, without further ado, here are a few of my favorites from Shrek the Halls in ICE! Oh, okay, they’re all my favorites.
Shrek the Halls is appropriately presented by the ice cold refreshment of Coca-Cola.
The proof is in the picture. Me, all bundled up in blue and standing within a nine-degree dome of ice. And loving every minute of it!
Everybody is offered a big, blue, incredibly warm, parka.
Shrek and Donkey
Come on in. The ICE! is fine.
The ogre youngsters – Fergus, Fargo, and Felicia
The detail is amazing.
Two members of the Piglet trio.
This would be my wee one in the ICE! outhouse.
Puss tips his Santa-inspired hat.
Five ICE! slides provide the ultimate slip-n-slide party with the Three Little Pigs, and lots of flying Dronkeys overhead.
Fiona and the triplets warm up by an ICE! fire.
If I absolutely had to pick a favorite ICE! sculpture, it would have to be Dragon. Take a look…
Shrek learns the true meaning of Christmas.
Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!
In case you’re interested (and why wouldn’t you be – this is amazing), ICE! is created by forty talented master ice carvers from the Harbin International Snow and Ice Festival in Harbin, China, just across the border from Siberia (and I thought nine degrees was cold). They spend more than a month carving, slicing, dicing and even splicing ice to make this wintry wonderland.
Ice for the Harbin International Snow and Ice Festival, is retrieved from the Songhua River. While the Potomac River might make a frosty enough plunge for a Polar Bear Club member, it just doesn’t get quite cold enough to produce ice for sculpting and carving exquisite images of fairy tale characters. The clear, white, and precisely-dyed colored ice for ICE! is custom-ordered from a manufacturing plant in Ohio.
Every ICE! exhibit ends with a dazzling Nativity scene cut out of crystal-clear ice.
Nativity scene in crystal-clear ice.
…and an ICE! Angel.
Character meet and greets are always fun, and one of my most favorite things … as long as I don’t have to wait in too long of a line (I’m impatient like that). The Gaylord National offers the fun of DreamWorks characters such as Shrek, Puss-in-Boots, Po from Kung Fu Panda, and Alex the Lion of Madagascar (Mada-who-ha?).
Everybody’s favorite feline, Alex the Lion from Madagascar.
The whole gang with the mighty ogre himself, Shrek.
Gingy’s Gingerbread Decorating is a fun way to rest a bit. Trust me, there is a lot of walking. The Gaylord is gigantic. A little down time is well worth it.
Gingy’s Gingerbread Decorating
Carefully decorating Gingy.
We chose the train. Icing and a large variety of candies are included in the kit. I might add that our train did not make it home….Gingerbread is yummy and my “children” could give Cookie Monster a run for his money, or cookies, as the case may be.
Gingy and the Gingerbread Train. Yum-O!
We did not do the meet-n-greet with Gingy (too busy gobbling ginger….uh, candy…) but he did wave to us from the shop. He is quite the friendly fellow.
The back side of Gingerbread.
Overnight stays are not required to participate in ICE! or many of the other super fun activities, though some do require a fee. If you’re not too tired after a day of ICE! and walking the gorgeous grounds of the Gaylord, stick around and check out this…
The fountain comes to life with colored water that dances to choreographed music.
60-foot glass Christmas tree and cascades of “Northern Lights.”
Along with the incorporation of those iconic Coca-Cola polar bears, the other three Gaylord resorts celebrate the season with their own special events and DreamWorks themes. Gaylord Opryland, in Nashville, Tennessee, hosts A Country Christmas and Shrek the Halls in ICE! The Palms, Orlando, Florida, puts on Christmas at the Palms and Merry Madagascar in ICE! The Texan, near Dallas, Texas, offers A Lone Star Christmas and Merry Madagascar in ICE!
Check out Examiner.com for even more cool info. on Shrek and the Gaylord National’s ICE! attraction.
For a look at the Gaylord Palms ICE! event, check out AdventuresByDaddy.com.
Disclosure: The author received complimentary admission to ICE! as part of the Gaylord National’s Media Day. All opinions expressed herein are strictly those of the author.