Ice Palace Maze opens soon in Stillwater

Stillwater is about to freeze out the competition when it comes to the largest Ice Maze in the United States.

The Zephyr Theatre is in the middle of chipping away at this frozen form of art, which is made up of 2,900 blocks of ice and will end up being around 775 thousand pounds of ice.

The Ice Palace Maze costs the theatre about $200 thousand to build, but they say it’s well worth the price tag to bring the community outside together and safely.

"This year we have Minnesota Ice sculpting two ten-foot ice dragons out in front of it, an eight-foot ice throne, so we really want to keep making this a yearly attraction," Calyssa Hall, the Executive Director of The Zephyr Theatre, says this is the second year they’ve built the ice maze.

2022’s version will be different, though, with a new challenging maze and about 400 square feet larger than last year’s maze.

Hall says each block costs about 40 dollars and is carefully selected from a spring in Ohio.

The theatre explains the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has strict guidelines on what kind of ice can be shipped into the state to keep bacteria and unwanted species out of local lakes and rivers.

The ice also has to be picture-perfect and clear for the event.

In 2021 Hall says around 31 thousand people showed up, and she expects even more to come this time for the freezing family fun.

"This will all be lit up with LEDs, we have a color changing tower and an ice bar, hot chocolate and s’mores. The princesses will be interacting with the kids and we will have knights and ice sculptures. So it should be fun for the whole family." Hall said.

The maze takes about three weeks to build and will be ready for the public by January 15th at noon.

Tickets for adults are $22 at the gate, $20 if you register before the event.

Children ages 5-12 years are $15, and kids under five years old are free of charge.