Organizers of this year’s Long John Jamboree are warning the public that there is open water on Yellowknife Bay after crews harvested ice over the weekend.
Ice that was harvested will be used for the festival’s ice carving contest, which will be returning this year.
The Inspired Ice Carving Competition was a marquee event during the annual winter festival between 2012 and 2015.
There wasn’t an event during the 2016 festival however, after De Beers announced it couldn’t provide funding for it.
That was until last month when the mining giant announced it’d be returning as the sponsor of one of the festival’s title events.
Crews began harvesting ice for the competition on Saturday.
As a result, Long John organizers say there is open water along the Dettah ice road near the access point to the community.
“Please keep your eyes open for open water, as well as large snow berms, fencing, and other ice hazards while driving, snowmobiling, or skiing,” read a post on the festival’s Facebook page.
Two years ago, a festival organizer told Moose FM the Inspired Ice Carving Competition is one of few in the world that uses naturally frozen ice for its competition instead of manufactured blocks.
At least 10 teams will be competing in this year’s competition, including teams from the Northwest Territories, other parts of Canada and the United States.
Teams will start work on Mar. 23 – a day before the winter festival kicks off – and wrap up on Mar. 25 when their final products will be judged.
All other Long John Jamboree events will take place between Mar. 24 and Mar. 26 on Yellowknife Bay.
— De Beers Canada (@DeBeersCanada) March 11, 2017