Winter Wonderland — IceFest trolley rolls out; live ice sculpting demonstrations Thursdays in Lake Orion

Winter Wonderland — IceFest trolley rolls out; live ice sculpting demonstrations Thursdays in Lake Orion

Oxford Downtown Development Authority Board of Directors Chair Rod Charles (right) and Lake Orion DDA Board of Directors Chair Debbie Burgess cut the ribbon to celebrate the inaugural run of a trolley that will run between downtown Oxford and downtown Lake Orion on Thursdays and Saturdays. The boards and directors from Oxford and Lake Orion DDAs and the North Oakland Transportation Authority (NOTA) joined the ribbon cutting and took the first ride from Oxford to Lake Orion as part of the Stronger Together campaign between the two communities.

By Dean Vaglia

Oxford Leader Staff Writer

The trolley for the Oxford and Lake Orion Downtown Development Authorities (DDA) #StrongerTogether IceFest left Centennial Park for its inaugural circuit at 4 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 10.

Running on Thursdays from 4-9 p.m. and Saturdays from 12-9 p.m., the “Downtown Trolley Express” makes two stops in Oxford and Lake Orion.

The trolley leaves Centennial Park, makes its first Lake Orion stop at the corner of Shadbolt and Broadway Streets outside of Fork n’ Pint, stops again at Broadway and Front Streets, then turns back onto M-24 heading to the corner of East and Washington Streets before returning to Centennial Park.

Each trolley stop is marked by signs and Kelly Westbrook, Oxford DDA executive director, expects 12-15 minute waits. The bus was provided by SMART and the DDAs are paying NOTA for drivers.

The trolley is currently a pilot program and could continue to operate between Lake Orion and Oxford if received well.

Additional stops may be added in the future with one proposed stop being in the White House District south of the downtown Oxford area.

The current end date for the trolley program is March 31 and there are funding proposals out right now that would extend the program and add additional operating days.

The #StrongerTogether IceFest runs until the end of February. Week three’s sculpture theme is “Movie Night.”

(Below) Check out the winter wonderland window art by Tanja Gojcaj at Bitter Tom’s on Broadway Street. Online: — LOR photos/Jim Newell.
Clinton Rich of Clear Cut Ice Sculptures carves a dragon out of ice during the Lake Orion Downtown Development Authority’s second annual IceFest. Ice Fest activities will continue from 5-9 p.m. every Thursday in February, with live ice carving demonstrations, pre-carved ice sculptures placed around downtown Lake Orion and specials at local businesses.
There is also a warming hub at the corner of Anderson and Front streets, with fire pits and space heaters, as well as in the Flint Street Alleyway and at American Legion Post 233 on S. Broadway Street.

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