'Snow city' opens in Tartu

Snow city in Tartu.
Snow city in Tartu.

A 'snow city' has been opened in Tartu's central park, adjacent to the Kaubamaja department store. Fun, presumably intended for children, can be had in a snow fortress, which boasts five snow slides and two tunnels, and there are many beautiful snow sculptures to view for those of a more sedate disposition. The project was a rapid roll-out, off the back of recent snow and low temperatures in Estonia's second city.

Mayor of Tartu Urmas Klaas (Reform) says that the development is a good example of cooperation, Tartu-style.

Klaas said, via a city government press release, that: "Everything took place as a collaborative effort, with only a matter of days being required to make the move from concept to realization. I believe that the newly-completed 'snow city' will become a most exciting playground for children this winter."

The feature was completed involving several institutions, including students and lecturers from the Pallas Art College, and the Baltic Defence College (Balti Kaitsekolledž). Tartu Kaubamaja and the city government provided financial support, as well as coordinating the development, Tartu City Government said.

Construction of the snow city took three days and required 40 dumpers filled with snow, which were transported to the city center from the old Raadi Airfield. Rapid construction of the snow city took place even in the coldest of temperatures, from 10 a.m. in the morning to 6 p.m. in the evening.

Twenty-five art students and several Pallas staff members helped to build the snow fort and ice sculptures, taking advantage of the recent cold spell.

Under the guidance of students from Pallas' sculpture department, eye-catching snow sculptures entitled "Kissers" and "Anniversary" have be erected close to the "fort".

Vallo Nuust, Pallas art school rector, says he is more than satisfied with the work and praised those students who he said pulled off a monumental result despite the cold weather.

Deputy Mayor Raimond Tamm, who coordinated cooperation between the various parties involved, added that: "The idea of building a snow city originated less than two weeks ago, and the enthusiasm with which the partners joined in the project and contributed to the completion of the snow city is unparalleled. Many thanks to all of the partners who together made such a grand gesture to the people of Tartu."

Visitors to the snow city are asked to follow the usual restrictions and maintain social distancing.


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Editor: Roberta Vaino, Andrew Whyte

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