The sketch showed a rollercoaster car and two stuffed animals enjoying a 90 degree plunge down an icy track.
But much of the actual creation largely remained piles and blocks of snow as a sculpture carving contest deadline loomed in less than 24 hours.
But the Moxies Maxim team — creator of Pups and Downs — were confident they’d be ready as they worked on a cold Friday under clear skies at the Rockford Park District’s Sinnissippi Park.
“We’ll make it,” said one team member while carving out a roller coaster track.
Moxies Maxim was among 11 entries as the 30th annual Illinois Snow Sculpting Competition finally got under way last week. There was separate competition featuring 15 high school teams.
An exhibition team — last year’s contest winner — also participated.
Unfortunately Pups and Downs wasn’t among the award winners named on Saturday.
Top state honors went to the Quatsch-Men team of Jack Gerard, Peter Hermann, and Fran Volz with their sculpture titled “Oh My Pumpy-Umpy-Umkin.” The sculpture was also well-liked by visitors, earning People’s Choice top honors.
Top teams were honored at the competition’s awards ceremony on Saturday.
The Quatsch-Men will now advance to the 2017 U.S. Nationals Snow Sculpting Competition in Lake Geneva, Wis.
Delayed one week due to warm weather and lack of snow, park district and event officials brought in snow-making equipment — rented from a snocross club — and Mother Nature added an assist with colder weather.
Once underway, there wasn’t a power tool in sight as part of the contest’s strict and precise rules.
State teams could use only three sculptors while high school teams could have four. Teams use axes, shovels, saws and hand tools and homemade scraping tools. Pre-molded forms were prohibited.
Each team was assigned a 10-foot high block of snow that measured six feet wide and long. Completed entries could not expand beyond 12 feet in diameter, but height was unlimited. High school blocks measured 4-feet wide, 4-feet long, and 6-feet high.
The competition is traditionally held along the winding roads inside at Sinnissippi Park and typically draws more than 30,000 visitors over a four-day run.
— Worth the wait as snow sculptures dazzled in Illinois competition —