Editor, Valdez Star 

Snow Town Ice Classic pays out over $1,500 this year

Tripod fell on Ruth Pond fell on same day as its first cousin on Tanana River


Source: City of Valdez

The tripod on Ruth Pond fell Saturday at 4:51 p.m. - making one guesser a little richer.

One good guesser in Valdez is over $1,500 richer.

That is the news from the city's Parks and Recreation Dept. which saw its tripod on Ruth Pond fall due to thinning ice Saturday, marking the end of its 2016 Snowtown Ice Classic.

"The actual time the tower fell was on Saturday, 23 April at 4:51p.m.," the City of Valdez said in a press release from Darryl Verfaillie, director of parks and recreation.

And the winner is - Tara Yunker.

She guessed the tripod would fall Saturday at 3:42 p.m. and hers was the closest to that time.

"Ms. Yunker will collect $1,860.00 for her guess, while the Advocates for Victims of Violence (AVV) will collect $1,530.00 to go towards valuable programming," the press release said.

The Snow Town Ice Classic in Valdez is a fundraiser for AVV. Tickets for the ice classic cost $3 per guess this year, and the funds are split three ways.

The person who pegs the time at least one of the tripod's flags touches the ice get half of the ticket earnings, while 40 percent goes to AVV, and 10 percent is allocated for maintenance of parks and trails in Valdez.

Ticket sales closed March 25.

Verfaillie began the ice classic in Valdez after petitioning the legislature to allow for its creation.

Ironically, Alaska's better known grandfather of the popular guessing game, the Nenana Ice Classic, also saw the clock on its tripod stop on Saturday. That contest ended a little earlier, at 3:39 p.m.

Located on the Tanana River, the Nenana Ice Classic turned 100 years old this year.

"The Tanana River ice moved the Tripod downstream 100 feet stopping the clock," its website says. "The official time the clock stopped was April 23, 2016 at 3:39 P.M. Alaska Standard Time."

Unlike Valdez, ticket holders of the Nenana Ice Classic will have to wait and see who wins - and how much each winner will receive.

"At this time we do not have a list of winners, we are still compiling the guesses and entering them into our database," organizers say. "As soon as we are finished (about 2 weeks), we will begin notifying the winners."

Last year, 28 winners split a $330,000 jackpot.


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