MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) —  There is an effort near Little Falls tonight to create the largest ice carousel in the world

It’s happening on Green Prairie Fish Lake, and they’re hoping to have the carousel moving sometime Thursday evening.

“Mother Nature has the commanding hand in the whole deal,” said organizer Chuck Zwilling.

But Mother Nature likely didn’t plan for Zwilling and his crew.

They’re using chainsaws to cut one heckuva circle in the ice. And they’re not just trying to break last year’s Icefest record. They want to shatter the world record.

“We did 111 meters last year. Then in Finland they did 122. When I went to Maine they did 130. We are at 153 meters probably,” said Zwilling.

That’s about 500 total feet of frozen, frigid work — cutting through about a foot and a half of ice.

But they’re getting a hand from a group who knows a thing or two about ice.

Janne Kapylehto is an engineer and he’s part of a team from Finland who puts their own spin on ice carousels. They’re here to help get this one started.

“Doing ice carousels is all about having fun, entertainment, connecting people in a positive way,” explained Kapylehto.

Like last year, when big chunks of ice are cut they’re pushed under and away from the circle. Then they’ll attach trolling motors to make it spin.

But whether they get it moving or not isn’t the most important thing. All the donations for the carousel will help battle child hunger.

“Somebody asked us last year, what if you fail? What if you don’t set the world record? I said we’ve already won,” said Zwilling. “Our goal this year is to reach $12,000 which would feed all the kids for one year that are in the program.”

The 2nd annual Sunny Zwilling Memorial Ice Carousel Extravaganza will take place this weekend.

There will be hockey and speed skating, among other activities.

The event is free. For more information click here.

John Lauritsen


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