Watch ice sculptors work their magic at the second Fire and Ice Festival. Photo: Talbot County Office of Tourism

Walk in a Winter Wonderland at Easton’s Fire & Ice Festival

Ice sculptures will be popping up along the streets of Easton, Md. this weekend as the Fire and Ice Festival returns for a second year.

The family-friendly festival kicks off on the evening of Feb. 18 with a Friday Night Block Party, featuring live ice carving by the artists of Ice Lab and musical performances to kick off the weekend of activities. The group Get in the Van performs at the Talbot County Courthouse, Sam Pugh on Harrison Street and Ann Burgess in front of Roma Pizza at 2A S. West Street from 5-8 p.m. To demonstrate how such detailed sculptures are created from a big block of frozen water, Ice Lab creators will be on hand for live carving demonstrations 5-9 pm.

The festival itself runs Feb. 18-19, with sculptures outside businesses throughout downtown. If you’re in the mood for snowflake cookies and hot toddies, stop by Dragonfly at 21 Goldsborough Street on both days of the festival.

Pogo the Akita models alongside his ice sculpture at the last Fire and Ice Festival. Photo

What pet lover can resist a dog kissing booth? For a small donation, Talbot Humane Society donors get to kiss one of the loveable canines in the Society’s care. Find them on 13 S. Harrison Street. For more puppy love, Pogo the Akita will personally greet visitors at An Optical Galleria at 19 North Harrison Street, where there is an impressive ice sculpture carved in Pogo’s image. “People loved this event two years back,” says Niki Pino,  who owns the eyewear boutique and is Pogo’s proud human. 

Still on Harrison Street, Studio B Art Gallery invites visitors to “cure the winter blues and cabin fever” with a meet and greet on Friday night. For more art-related activities, the Academy Arts Museum on South Street encourages visitors to test their skills at ice carving on an ice graffiti wall in the Museum’s courtyard. And for a taste of local spirits, they’ll have award-winning Lyon Rum available.

On Saturday, the Talbot County Free library sponsors story time at 11:00 am. Registration is suggested. At 2, they’ll screen the Pixar movie Soul. No registration is required for this event, but get there early to snag a seat.

Live music continues on Saturday with New Legacy Blues at the Courthouse from 12-4 p.m.; Anna Burgess at 1 on Harrison Street and Jayme Dingler at 12 on Goldsborough Street. Guthrie Matthews plays from 12-3 p.m. at Roma Pizza. At 7 p.m. the Avalon Theater hosts Amy Helm. Tickets are available here.

In keeping with the theme of Fire and Ice, Legal Assets at 22 S Harrison Street offers both. “We’ll have a heated tent, a roaring fireplace and a bar carved out of ice serving up specialty drinks from Woodford Reserve Bourbon, New Amsterdam Vodka and Hendrick’s Gin,” says partner Valerie Clark. Chef David will be offering soups and sandwiches for purchase and Black Dog Alley is set to play 5-8 p.m.

Last year, a vintage movie camera, iconic Eastern Shore crabs, a sailboat, a bikini and bathing trunks,  a gigantic beer mug (complete with foam) and even Yoda, all in ice, decorated the streets of Easton. Come see what the ice artists have in store for this year. 

-Niambi Davis