By Serena Carpino
Hundreds of patrons gathered in the village Sunday, Feb. 4, for the finale of the 5th annual Port Jefferson Ice Festival. The first part was held Saturday, Jan. 27.
The festival, organized by the Port Jefferson Business Improvement District and the Greater Port Jefferson Chamber of Commerce, had many activities, including live ice carvings, interactive games such as ice corn hole and ice mini golf, also horse and carriage rides. In addition, attendees could walk around and find ice sculptures purchased by local businesses.
Retailers could purchase the sculptures for about $300, only half of what they cost to make. Many stores are in full support of the festival because of the business it attracts.
“I’m totally in support, it brings people out certainly and this is a beautiful weekend,” said Mary Joy Pipe, the owner of East End Shirt Company. “People want something to do in the middle of winter and this is it. I mean, come out, be outside, bring your family and there’s a lot of activity — a lot of things to do.”
Pipe explained that her business did not purchase a sculpture this year because of their proximity to businesses that did, but they have bought sculptures in the past. However, they did participate in a raffle that store customers “were able to engage in and we were happy to see them.”
Other business owners shared their love for the festival as well. “It’s a terrific event that brings a lot of happy people,” Sue Hoeffner, owner of Sea Creations, said. “Gets everybody out of the house in the cold weather. It’s such a perfect day, the sun is out. Everybody has a smile.”