This year’s Winterfest could not have taken place at a more appropriate time. This winter has begun, and had been confirmed by both meteorologists and sad university students scurrying between warm buildings, to be one of the coldest Melbourne has experienced in years. On the night of the Snow Party, temperatures in the Lemon-Scented Lawn hovered just above freezing and far below comfortable.
You can imagine the mixture of fear and awe felt by attendees when they encountered the few people that had decided to go to the Snow Party wearing only a tutu and leggings, and sometimes – if they were feeling slightly chilly – a leotard.
The less daring of us tended to dart between the Chalet, the Igloo, and a covered raised platform, which served as a secondary bar.Despite the title of the party, it did remain possible to avoid the cold at this event.
The Chalet, the largest and loudest, was filled comfortably with dancers, the occasional phone-checker, and conversationalists battling the music to be heard. The Chalet remained at a cosy temperature with the ice sculpture softening as a result of the warmer temperature of the venue.
Organisers also set up an inflatable igloo filled with manufactured snow. Attendees participated in a large-scale snow fight that involved missiles of compacted ice being shot around at participants. The people who stayed in the snow fight were playing for keeps, which was felt by this writer and her friend when a snowball rebounded so hard off the back of the friend’s head it caught the writer full in the face. It was awesome, but stung for a few minutes afterwards.
Though over a thousand tickets were sold, the event didn’t feel crowded, due to the event’s tidy organisation. No matter where you were in the Snow Party, just enough people were always around to be interesting, yet at the same time, never reached a level of unpleasant crowdedness. Hence, lines to the Snagga’s food cart, never dissolved into a hungry mob as did both bars which had a number of volunteers working them and drinks were provided with impressive speed.
Snow Party 2015 was a fantastic night out, and hopefully it returns again for next year’s Winterfest.