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Preparations well underway for the Saranac Lake Winter Carnival

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CNY/NNY/S. Tier: Preparations well underway for the Saranac Lake Winter Carnival
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Preparations are underway in Saranac Lake for its biggest event of the year. But one of the Winter Carnival's cornerstone features is in danger of not making it this year. Barry Wygel went to Saranac Lake to see what the status of the Ice Palace is.

SARANAC LAKE, N.Y. -- It's an event that brings the entire community together.

"Everybody participates in some aspect of winter carnival," said Katy Vananden, the Executive Director of the Saranac Lake Area Chamber of Commerce.

The ten day event brings in thousands of people from throughout the region for a number of events.

"It has a beautiful ice palace, lots of festivities, the area comes together with volunteers to have very fun events," said Lindy Ellis, a winter carnival organizer.

The ice palace is the centerpiece of the event, a tradition that dates back to the late 1800s. Preparations for the ice palace began last Saturday, but Wednesday's warm temperatures put a halt to the construction.

"They have put up the ice palace and have tried to protect it from the warm temperature and the rain. After the ground gets refrozen, they will start working on it tomorrow to work on repairing the gaps or building the ice palace up again," said Ellis.

But while the ice palace may be the visual cornerstone of the carnival, organizers say there is so much more to do.

"We are gathering tons and tons of different kinds of winter activities and packing it all into a schedule that goes on and on and on for 10 days," said Vananden.

"The carnival is just so much fun. It is people enjoying themselves and being a little bit silly, no, a lot a bit silly," said Ellis.

The carnival and ice palace began in 1898.

For more information and a complete schedule for the winter carnival, visit saranaclakewintercarnival.com.

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