Erie Arts and Culture and the Presque Isle Partnership have developed a collaborative fundraiser that is modeled after an Alaskan tradition that’s occurred every year since 1917. This idea was developed back in 2019.

The conditions in 2019 and in 2020 didn’t prove favorable for the fundraiser. This year, the Great Lake Ice Break is set to take place in March.

The Great Lake Ice Break is an approximately 12′ sculpture that will be placed on the ice of the East Canal Basin of Presque Isle Bay. It was designed by artist David Seitzinger and fabricated by Gene Davis Sales and Service.

According to a news release on Thursday afternoon, the sculpture has sat outside the Bayfront Sheraton to await the appropriate winter conditions. Bartlett Signs and Lake Shore Towing are assisting the non-profit organizations with logistics of placing the sculpture on ice. This is set to take place on March 1st.

Once the sculpture is in place, the Erie community can visit between Monday, March 1st and Saturday, March 12th to place predictions as to when the ice will break and the sculpture will plunge into the water.

Each entry is $5 and those taking part must indicate the month, day, and time they predict the ice will give way. The participant or participants who have the correct predictions will win 50% of the pot, while the remaining 50% benefiting Erie Arts and Culture and Presque Isle Partnership.

The public can visit the East Canal Basin once the sculpture is in place. A pedestrian dock is accessible from the sidewalk along State Street and the public can see the Great Lake Ice Break sculpture from that dock.

You are also encouraged to post photos of the sculpture on social media using #gliberie2021 or #greatlakeicebreak.

For more information, you can visit