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Community News

January 26, 2011

Hockey to be seen at Ice Harvest Festival

On Saturday, Feb. 5, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Hanford Mills Museum will host its Ice Harvest Festival. The festival will feature historic ice cutting, horse-drawn sleigh rides, ice hockey demos and tips from the State University College at Oneonta hockey club, ice sculpting, outdoor fire pits, as well as children's games and activities.

Local restaurants are providing soup for a soup buffet; and vendors will sell fresh roasted peanuts, hot apple cider, and hand-knit mittens and hats. In the Hanford House, which re-creates home life in the 1920s, interpreters will show how to cook on a woodstove.

"Before there was refrigeration, communities 'harvested' ice in the winter so they could preserve agricultural products and keep food cold in the warmer months," Executive Director Liz Callahan said in a media release. "We re-create this tradition here at Hanford Mills."

Children and adults can walk out on the frozen mill pond and help cut blocks of ice using vintage ice saws. A 1922 gas-powered ice saw will also be used. The ice will then be hauled by sled and by a modified Ford Model T snowmobile to a traditional ice house. Callahan said the ice will be used to make ice cream at Hanford Mill's Independence Day Celebration and other summer events.

Callahan, who noted that more than 1,100 people came last year, said that based on feedback from last year, there will be several outdoor fire pits so visitors can warm up.

Museum staff have also cleared a large part of the mill pond for the SUNY Oneonta hockey club, which is participating in ice harvest for the first time. The team will skate and show their skills, and offer visitors the chance to shoot pucks. Returning to Ice Harvest is the State University College of Technology at Delhi Hospitality Center Ice Team. The team, which competes nationally, will make several ice sculptures during the event.

Hanford Mills Museum will also collect canned goods to be given to a local food bank.

The cost is $8.50 for adults and $4 for seniors. AAA and other discounts available. Children 12 and younger, museum members and those who live in the 13757, 13739, 13786, 13750 or 13806 zip codes may attend for free. Residents are asked to bring identification to receive free admission

Hanford Mills Museum is at the intersections of county routes 10 and 12 in East Meredith. For more information, visit www.hanfordmills.org or call 278-5744.

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