Ice and Spice Festival to light up Penn Avenue this weekend

Beginning Friday, 1/29 to Sunday 1/31, Penn Avenue businesses will be participating in West Reading’s Fourth Annual “Ice and Spice Festival”.

Mark Woodward, the owner of West Reading Tavern, shared that the Ice and Spice Festival originated six years ago when he employed a sculptor to create a duck ice statue outside the tavern for an event called “Duck, Duck, Beer”. “​Originally, we only did [the event] with the Tavern​,” said Woodward. “​Now, we have a lot of support from other businesses.​”

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Sixteen different businesses along Penn Avenue are sponsoring an ice sculpture outside their shops this year, and according to Woodward, every business is doing something special to promote the event.

Photo courtesy of West Reading.

“​I’m doing this to support other businesses,​” said Woodward, the sole financial sponsor of the event. “​I enjoy seeing people out on The Avenue…we’ve all had a tough time [over the last year]​.”

Woodward extended a special thanks to Wolf’s Ice in Reading, who will be supplying the 7500 pounds of ice used in this year’s sculptures, professional sculptor Danny Kissel (the recent winner of Food Network’s show “Outrageous Pumpkins”), his father, Steve Woodward, who helps run the West Reading Tavern, and Serenity Wike, who helped him organize this year’s event.

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When people come to view the beautiful sculptures this weekend, Woodward asked them to keep one important thing in mind. “​Please support at least one business in West Reading while you are here​,” he shared. “​Whether you dine in, order takeout, get coffee, or support the local retail shops…[remember] that everyone has had a hard time​.”

The schedule of participating businesses is as follows (times are approximate): Carvings on Friday, January 29: Coral Reef Connection, 2 PM (500 Block), Studio West Hair Salon, 4 PM* (500 Block), Sweet Ride Ice Cream, 5 PM* (500 Block), Chatty Monks Brewing, 6 PM* (600 Block), La Abuela, 7 PM* (400 Block).

Carvings on Saturday, January 30: Wm. H. Diller Jeweler, 11 AM (600 Block), Saylor House, 11 AM (600 Block), Comalli Taqueria, 12 PM* (700 Block), Willow Creek Brewing, 12 PM* (600 Block), The Barley Mow, 2 PM* (700 Block), Dressed in Love, 2 PM* (600 Block), Beer Wall on Penn, 3 PM* (600 Block), Winedown Cafe, 3 PM* (600 Block), Let’s Taco Bout It, 4 PM* (600 Block), Hot Yoga West Reading, 4 PM* (600 Block), West Reading Tavern, 5 PM* (600 Block).

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Emily Fitzpatrick Kenniston
Emily Fitzpatrick Kenniston
I cover news on small businesses and local events.
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