Ice carving tradition continues

First place DeBeers Inspired Ice carving by Junichi Nakamura of Japan and Shinichi Sawamura of Fairbanks, Alaska. Photo Courtesy of De Beers Canada

During the Long John Jamboree March 24-25, Junichi Nakamura of Japan and Shinichi Sawamura of Fairbanks, Alaska, (formerly of Japan), created a dazzling ice elephant to win the 6th annual De Beers Inspired Ice International Ice Carving Competition in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories.

Having won the event in 2015, these 15-time World Ice Carving Champions finished with a final score of 91.17, just ahead of defending 2017 champions Peter Slavin from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Chris Swarbrick from Ellsworth, Wisconsin, who scored 90.20. Aaron Costic and Jeff Meyers both from Broadview, Ohio, came in a close third place with a score of 90.00.

Northwest Territories participant Terry Pamplin of Yellowknife with team member Stephan Koch from Yorktown, Indianna, placed sixth with a score of 83.63 to win in the Silver Medal category, the top win for the territory.

This year was the largest array of inter­national participants with 10 teams from the United States, Japan, Sweden, Belgium and Italy.

De Beers Canada announced it will provide $150,000 in funding into the popular Inspired Ice Carving Competition over the next five years. A Yellowknife tradition, the funds will help transform the competition into one of the world’s premier ice carving contests.