Ice palace torn down

SARANAC LAKE – It took days to build and only hours to destroy the Winter Carnival Ice Palace.

Bulldozer operators took careful aim at the shiny blue walls of the palace before smashing into them with the vehicles’ buckets. The large, stacked blocks of ice that comprised the palace walls shattered and fell into a heap on the ground, where next year’s palace will be built.

The Saranac Lake village Department of Public Works crew began demolishing the palace at 7:30 a.m. today, and Superintendent Jeff Dora said he expected to have it reduced to rubble by noon.

“It varies each year depending on the size of the castle,” Dora said. “This year it’s going to take a little longer. It’s bigger than last year, the blocks are thicker, and we’ve had a lot more cold weather. Because of those issues, it could take four or five hours.”

Dora explained that the village carries insurance on the structure, and that runs out at the end of February. When warm weather makes the palace unsafe, workers take it down sooner, but that didn’t happen this year.

Contact Shaun Kittle at 891-2600 ext. 25 or