In 1885, a New York Times Reporter wrote that Saint Paul was the "Siberia of America" and questioned whether it was fit for human habitation. Offended by this attack on their Capital City, the Saint Paul Chamber of Commerce decided to not only prove that Saint Paul was habitable, but that its citizens were very much alive during winter, the most dominant season. Thus was born the Saint Paul Winter Carnival.
In 1886, King Boreas I was crowned at the first Winter Carnival. This festival also featured an ice castle -- an elaborate creation made from Minnesota lakes -- which has evolved in an internationally recognized icon for Saint Paul's festival. The Saint Paul Winter Carnival, also known as "The Coolest Celebration on Earth," is the nation's oldest and largest winter festival. With more than 75 events -- including the breathtaking ice sculptures, snow sculptures, ice castles, parades and a giant snow slide -- the Carnival has become a trademark of history, community spirit and togetherness, turning Saint Paul into a winter wonderland in late January.
2004 Ice Palace
1986 Ice Palace