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7th annual Harbor Point Ice Fest to celebrate Lunar New Year

Ice Festival 2022
The Ice Festival in 2022
Ice Festival in 2022
Ice Festival in 2022
Posted at 4:45 PM, Jan 19, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-20 18:49:08-05

BALTIMORE — The Harbor Point Ice Festival is returning to the Baltimore waterfront this year - and this time, it's focused on celebrating the Lunar New Year.

With the Lunar New Year starting Sunday, "there's already some really cool stuff happening around the waterfront that weekend, and working with our friends over at Waterfront Partnership Baltimore, who help put this event on, we just thought this would be a really cool way to celebrate the holiday and do something fresh for the ice festival," explained Chris Seiler, director of marketing and communications for Beatty Development Group.

The festival promises "icy fun for all ages" from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Jan 21 in the Harbor Point Central Plaza, 1310 Point Street.

There will be live ice-sculpting demonstrations, with sculptors creating intricate ice displays based on the Year of the Rabbit; Chinese puppet-making; traditional Chinese dragon dance; food from Ekiben, STUFFED, Potato Craving Factory and Auntie Anne's; hot and cold drinks from Bar Movement; and music by DJ Folly.

This will be the seventh year for the event, and Seiler said it's grown each time.

"Last year, I think we had between 5,000 and 7,000 people here at Central Plaza in Harbor Point," he said. The ice sculpting is "a really amazing transition to watch. We know that people love this. It's always really fun to watch it happen... If you've got small kids, it's really fun to watch their faces as they see these guys doing this really cool, creative activity."

This is the first time it has a true theme, which was designed to complement events like the Lunar Night Cultural Festival happening at the Harbor this weekend.

Changes for this year include staggering the ice demos throughout the day, said Seiler, as well as incorporating more specialty food trucks and pop-ups.

"It seemed only right to bring [popular Korean-fusion restaurant] Ekiben," he said. STUFFED Food Truck also offers "literally everything overstuffed," Potato Craving Factory brings baked potatoes with creative toppings, and Auntie Anne's will also return.

"I would say come hungry, because we're going to have a lot of really cool options on the plaza," he said.

And, unlike many other festivals, this is one of those events where "we kind of need the weather to actually be against us" - that is, appropriately chilly and wintry.

"Based on what I'm seeing (weather-wise), if you're interested in coming, get here early," Seiler noted.