Snow Sculptor's Unique Life Journey

Turning adversity into inspiration.

Snow Sculptor's Unique Life Journey | Turning adversity into inspiration.

Sometimes inspiration comes from unlikely sources. That was certainly the case for the House of Thune snow sculpting team The local Minnesota  team won first place in the second annual snow sculpting contest that was held in Stillwater from January 18-22, 2023, reported ABC6 News.

The three-person team –  Kelley Thune, Dusty Thune, and David Aichinger carved 10 tons of snow into a sculpture named “Journey”. They didn’t expect to win.

“It felt pretty surreal being up there on the stage,” snow sculptor Kelly Thune told FOX 9 on Sunday. “There were so many pieces this year that I thought deserved to win it, that I didn’t expect it.”

The inspiration behind Journey
The inspiration for the sculpture came from an unlikely place, reported Fox 9. While the sculpture was being created, a team member’s art gallery was destroyed in a fire.

“He pulled the pieces back together and came here, and we finished by winning,” Dusty Thune said. “It was just an amazing moment of triumph for him.”

While winning the competition was important, the real prize, according to the team, was overcoming adversity to do so.


The competition was steep
Teams came from as far away as Germany, Finland, Ecuador, Argentina, and even Turkey, to compete in the competition. Of course there are many other ice sculpting contests in the US and abroad. The Illinois competition takes place in Rockford from February 8-10, 2023. Now in its 37th year, the contest draws crowds of 50,000 people.

The largest US competition is the Ice Alaska World ice Art Championship, according to Kompster, a site about competitions. Over 70 teams compete every year in the event that lasts 132 hours. There are several categories including single block, multi-block, and one just for youth.

These ice sculptures last just as long as the weather stays cold. "It’s worth it to come to Stillwater right now and check it out because this won’t be around forever,” Dusty Thune told Fox9. Sadly, in just a few weeks, Journey will melt but the inspiration will last much, much longer.

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