Chinatown Ice Sculpture Showcase

Chinatown Ice Sculpture Showcase
Chinatown Ice Sculpture Showcase
Celebrate the Lunar New Year

Chinatown Ice Sculpture Showcase

Everything you need to know about the latest festival to take over Calgary’s Chinatown neighbourhood

Have you ever seen a sculpture being carved out of 10 feet of ice? How about a park full of ice sculptures being lit up at night? The Chinatown Ice Sculpture Showcase is a brand new festival bringing world-class talent straight from Harbin, China, to Calgary this winter - and you won’t want to miss it.

What is the Chinatown Ice Sculpture Showcase?

The Chinatown Ice Sculpture Showcase (CISS) is a brand new festival in Calgary. Professional ice carvers showcase their skills. This is a chance to see masters of the craft create ice sculptures right here in Calgary!

The ice carvers break the ice on February 2, carving from February 3 to 5, and the sculptures will sticking around until February 28. The festival is open to the public, so you can watch the carvers as they work and come back to see the sculptures lit up in the evenings after the grand opening on February 5.

Chinatown Ice Sculpture Showcase

Photo by: @artanow_2015 on Instagram

What does the event involve?

The ice carvers spend three days chipping away at over a dozen huge blocks of ice (some as high as 10 feet tall), creating stunning sculptures. The carving process is open to watch and after they complete the sculptures, they will be on display until February 28. The sculptures will also be lit up after dark, so make sure to check them out in the day and evening.

This is a great chance to pick up a bubble tea, take a stroll through the sculptures, go for some dim sum, and explore everything awesome Chinatown has to offer.

What can I see and do?

In addition to watching the carvers work their magic creating the ice sculptures and checking them out after they’re complete, there are some other awesome events happening around the Showcase to check out.

On February 5, visit for the Grand Opening from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.. This will also serve to kick off the Chinese New Year and there will be a dragon dance as well as other cultural activities.

On February 6, you can attend the 2019 Year of the Pig Chinese New Year Dinner Gala, hosted by the Chinese District BIA. The Gala begins with a preview of the Ice Sculptures in James Short Park, followed by a 10 course banquet style dinner at the Regency Palace Restaurant.

Chinatown Ice Sculpture Showcase

Photo by: @dderedin77 on Instagram

Who should go?

Anyone who loves sculpture, learning about Chinese culture, or experiencing a stunning new festival should attend! This the perfect event to stop by to make the most of your lunch break, have a fun afternoon with the family, or for a romantic date night in the evening to see the sculptures light up. Everyone is welcome to see these stunning works of art.

How can I go to the event?

The Chinatown Ice Sculpture Showcase will be held at James Short Park (115 4th Ave SW). James Short Park is downtown with many Calgary Transit options available, and is 2 blocks north of the Centre Street and First Street LRT stations.

The sculpture carving will happen February 3 to 5, with the exhibitions opening from February 6 to 28 (between 9:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. daily, weather permitting). Admission is voluntary by donation, with proceeds going towards nonprofit organizations.

For more information on the Chinatown Ice Sculpture Showcase, visit the Chinatown District BIA website and follow them on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.