Monday, February 6, 2017

Ice Carnival 1930s-1960s

Clarkson and SUNY Potsdam used to host a joint event each winter called Ice Carnival.  This event started in 1931 and seems to have ended in 2001.  Clarkson brought back an event with this name in 2013, but it was just for Clarkson and really nothing like the original Ice Carnival.  It will probably take a few posts, but I'm going to try and summarize this event - please help me fill in the blanks!

The Beginnings 

The first "Winter Carnival" was a one-day event held in February, 1931.  It was called the Normal-Clarkson First Annual Winter Carnival.  The highlight was a costume parade on skates.  Other events included a hockey game and broomball game (played with a basketball).
1934 Ice Carnival King and Queen

The idea of an Ice Carnival was conceived in 1930 by Murray Walker, treasurer of J.R. Weston Inc. and the director of the Clarkson Hockey Association, and Miss Eunice "Brownie" Badger, a member of the Potsdam faculty. It was created to promote a united spirit of festivity between the two colleges.  The first Ice Carnival featured a grand parade with prizes for best costumes, speed races, a hockey game between two teams of girls from Potsdam and a dance in the Clarkson gym.  The election of a King and Queen was added in the second Carnival. Figure and stunt skating presentations given by groups from Lake Placid and a men's cross country ski race were added in the third year.

In 1935 Ice Carnival was lengthened to two days to give time for a presentation of the Minto Club Follies.  In 1937 a third day was added for a skating party.  At the 25th anniversary of Ice Carnival they included a Beard-Growing Contest (the winner won an electric razor). 
The Minto Club in 1953
1953 Schedule
1962 Schedule
At the 30th anniversary there was a 335 mile sleigh ride from Buffalo to Potsdam made by six students and two chaperones (and one horse), appearing in several radio and TV interviews along the way.  The Glenn Miller Orchestra performed at the dance that year.

1967 Schedule
1965 dance
Organization & Themes
1952 Ice Carnival Committee
Ice Carnival was run by students from both colleges with several months of planning.  A 1961 news story says there were co-chairs (one chairperson from each school) and sixteen subcommittees.  An overall theme was selected and events like the Ice Statue competition and Ice Show tied into the theme.

King & Queen 
1939 King & Queen

1950 King & Queen
Until sometime in the mid- to late-60s the Ice Carnival King always came from Clarkson and the Queen always came from State.  This started to change as the men of State wanted to participate.  Apparently the Queen was elected from a photo campaign (after she was nominated by any group or organization, including fraternities) but the King candidates had to campaign, which according to a 1963 editorial in The Integrator: "became a spirited effort on the part of the sponsoring organization, lending both color and student enthusiasm to Ice Carnival. Students from State and Clarkson worked together on the campaigns of various candidates, campaigns that climaxed with the Cavalcade of Royalty on Saturday before the big weekend."

1930s Kings & Queens
1960s Kings & Queens

1952 King & Queen

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