Wilmette, Community

Wilmette embraces cold as it celebrates 150th with Winterfest

The town was put on ice on Saturday when artist Nate Johnson and his crew descended upon Wilmette.

Johnson Studios created ice sculptures — both premade and with live demonstrations — throughout the community to decorate Wilmette Winterfest, a celebration in honor of the town’s 150th anniversary.


Aloise Douglass, 6, of Wilmette, pretends to play on the ice piano, a creation of Johnson Studios for Wilmette Winterfest.

The ice carvers began their day at Fourth and Linden before moving to Ridge Road, where they carved an ice pig for Zier’s Prime Meats. They also created at Chalet Nursery before finishing on the Village Green in downtown Wilmette. There, Johnson carved a celebratory “Wilmette 150” piece.

Many Wilmette businesses and groups also arranged for Johnson Studios to create custom ice sculptures, such as Ramen noodles for Torino Ramen, a replica of North Shore Community Bank’s facade or a Big Green Egg grill for the Backyard Barbecue Store

In addition, a DJ provided the soundtrack on the Village Green, while the activities were offered at the library and “Frozen” was played at the Wilmette Theatre.

The winter party was the first major event of Wilmette’s yearlong sesquicentennial happenings. The other events are an art festival yet to be scheduled for the late spring and the main event in September.

The sesquicentennial will also give a boost to annual events, such as the Memorial Day observance and the summer sidewalk sale.

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joe coughlin
Joe Coughlin

Joe Coughlin is a co-founder and the editor in chief of The Record. He leads investigative reporting and reports on anything else needed. Joe has been recognized for his investigative reporting and sports reporting, feature writing and photojournalism. Follow Joe on Twitter @joec2319

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