The ice castle sensation in Stillwater, which has drawn large crowds, will be closed Thursday and possibly into next week for safety reasons.
Walking surfaces inside and around the attraction will become "unmanageably wet" as temperatures rise into the 40s, the Greater Stillwater Chamber of Commerce said Wednesday. Walls of the castle measure from 10 to 15 inches thick and will survive the warmer weather, the chamber said.
Ice Castles LLC built the attraction in Lowell Park, on the St. Croix River, and opened it Jan. 6.
"Why can't Mother Nature be a little more consistent?" said Ice Castles promoter Amanda Roseth.
Roseth, of Woodbury, said it's understood that the unexpected, temporary closure comes as an inconvenience to visitors who bought tickets or planned to visit the attraction during an unrelated event, Hockey Day Minnesota, in Stillwater on Saturday.
Anyone who wants to reschedule a visit or receive a full refund can contact firstname.lastname@example.org, organizers said.
When colder temperatures return, Ice Castles workers will prepare the walking surface for reopening, Roseth said.
"Unfortunately, we have no control over the weather, and only a short notice of what the weather allows us to do," Roseth said.
"It is true that there will be some melting and the walking surface will become wet, but structurally the Ice Castles will be fine in warm weather."
Meanwhile, Hockey Day will continue as scheduled, said Robin Anthony, executive director of the Greater Stillwater Chamber of Commerce.