Thursday, February 7, 2013

Frederick's First Saturday In February Is Fire In Ice

Brrrrr it's cold outside. Freezing. Oh yes, it's nippy out there. One thing that is good for is... ICE. We had planned a Sunday afternoon brunch at Cafe Nola in Frederick Maryland, for February 2nd. A good day to get away from the throngs of purple people eaters we endured the evening before at Ben's gig. Time to enjoy some quality time alone together. Even though it was quite chilly with snow flurries in the air, we happily drove to Frederick. We LOVE this town, it is our little Portlandia. Frederick is filled with great restaurants, cool shops, and continuously celebrates the arts and music with a passion. I lived there for five years, and only left Frederick to be with my husband, in his area of the world. As a matter of fact we first met at good ole Baker Park where his fantastic band "Hectic Red" was playing a Sunday in the Park show. Awesome night! Someday we may find a place in Frederick again, so till then, we go there often as our prime destination for food, fun, and festivals. It's our Fredlandia.

Always full of surprises, we were met by an ice sculpture sitting on the sidewalk as soon as we stepped out of our car. I handed my phone to Ben and asked him to take a photo of it since I had slippery furry gloves on. This sparkling sculpture was of a snowflake with an eye in the center, just sitting there quietly shimmering in front of the 'Unique Optique' store. The name of the ice sculpture is "Eye See Winter." Smiling, off we walked to Cafe Nola.

We enjoyed our delicious brunch at Cafe Nola feeling all toasty and warm inside. I loved my portobello mushroom burger with greens and tomatoes along with a rare special treat of sweet potato fries. Ben had a breakfast of gooey eggs Benedict with steamed spinach, portobello mushrooms, along with mixed greens. He chose garlic mashed potatoes as his side dish. We savored wonderful cups of herb tea as we chatted and enjoyed our lazy morning... ahhhh afternoon... together. As we left the cafe, we decided to walk off our meal and stroll down Patrick and Market Street to enjoy a few of our favorite little shops. We discovered that shining ice sculptures were all over downtown! So cool. Frederick is like that! Check out that fabulous frozen arctic frog!

"Leap Frog" at Velvet Lounge

I have since found out that the day before was 'First Saturday,' and there is an annual ice sculpture event every February in downtown Frederick. I will have to put this on our calendar for next year! Apparently there were 40 ice sculptures, along with live ice carving demonstrations. The town was alive with dancing and numerous other activities put on by the Downtown Frederick Partnership. (Darn I had not checked into my alternate email address for quite some time, which is where I get such notices. I have got to remember that new password, so we don't miss out again!) The gleaming pot of ice tea was so superbly spectacular!

"Iced Tea" at Voila!
I really wanted to know who created all the luminous ice sculptures. An artist deserves credit for their work. The only information I found was that a man named Ira Dixon from 'USA Ice' had done a live ice carving demonstration featuring a dragon, and a statue of Zeus! Unfortunately when we passed the same area the next day, there was just a pile of broken ice remaining on the ground. You can read about that demonstration here and here. Just click on the photos that are part of the newspaper articles and see the artist Ira Dixon doing his thing with chain saws. Perhaps he made all of the sculptures, although I really do not know. 

There was no information on the Downtown Frederick Partnership site as to who the creators of the sculpture were, and as an artist I think that is important information that should be shared. Hopefully they will make a point of doing that next year. If anybody has any further information about any other artists participation in this project I would love to give them credit too. Whether it was the work of one person, or a group, there was some really wonderful creative pieces in this frosty icy show!

"Light Me Up" at Dream House Shop
We did not walk everywhere in town, so these are the photos we took while on Patrick and Market Streets. Some places only had remains of ice sculptures, although enough intact ice sculptures were left to make it feel like a gallery walk. The whole artsy situation matched our brisk walk in the frigid winter air completely. Just love the radiant frozen lamp above, sitting on a skirted side table in front of a furniture store. Perfect!

I am not sure of the name or location of the above sculpture we found swimming on Market Street, although it is a happy little ice fish. Perhaps he's a friend of my pet fish "Eric!" We were having such a fun time that my honey even bought me a few trinkets from a few of the stores for Valentines day. 

He has put away, one of the two he purchased from the Terressentials shop and we will pretend I never saw it! (Oh it's a lovely little carpet style bag with tassel! Shhhhh!) Gosh I love that store! While we were there I noticed that they had a large line of organic personal care products on their shelves. Not one to believe packaging and labels, when I went home I looked them up on the EWG (Environmental Working Group Skin Deep) site. Turns out Terresentials has the purest ingredients of anyone I have ever investigated! They are right there with Dr. Bronner products! Oh my! They are locally made in Maryland too! I will be back to their store very soon to get some personal care products for sure! I do not care if they are expensive either! Once you have been diagnosed with cancer, you realize the importance of not having synthetic chemicals on your body! I am very excited about Terressentials commitment to excellence! I love finding out about the good stuff!

From a lovely little shop across the street, 'Urban Cottage', Ben picked out a new glass juice prop for  'The Queen's Table Blog' that has crowns embossed around the glass as part of the design. Beautiful! Looks rather like ice sculpture too!

It was exciting to see what the next shape of ice sculpture would be as we traveled down the sidewalks! The sculptor probably had to work with the stores requests for shape and subject matter. I have to say that the word sculptures like the bank and the college were not that interesting, although they were probably difficult to execute perfectly. I really got a kick out of the bright shiny penny sculpture above with it's humorous sign.

"Two Hearts Are Better" at Molly's Meanderings
The intertwined glowing hearts above and the romantic icy Eiffel Tower below were perfect for the Valentines Day theme of February. We were certainly feeling the love from this way cool town.

"I Love Paris" Stay's  Cool at Visions
"Igloo Furnishings" at Salvaged
This is just a typical afternoon well spent in our little Fredlandia. Strolling down the street we even ran into the owner of a Bed and Breakfast in town where we stayed recently. That gorgeous post is coming up soon! So look out for that dreamy place! The only thing that would make Frederick better is if they had the mighty classic rock bands "Hectic Red" or "Technicolor Motor Home" perform at one of their summer festivals this year! They are the best bands in the land! So says the Queen! Well here I am modeling  for Ben the new flower for my winter hat that he also bought for me at Terressentials this fine winters day. Hey! What's that lady in the red dress doing behind me? Pointing her frozen in time mannequin toes? In the meantime my friends, enjoy all the sweet little shining glittering moments of your everyday events with loved ones! Sometimes in the land of ice and snow... the ice is good.


  1. A lovely day to share with the woman I love!

  2. What a nice day you had!! And you are simply the cutest Mamma! Love Frederick :)