Alberta dad creates impressive ‘ice ship’ to help his kids enjoy winter

Donnie White and his four year-old son Mateo pose with the ice ship Donnie built on their front yard using frozen blocks of ice from a nearby pond in Red Deer, Alta., Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

A 41-year-old father of three is getting attention for an impressive boat he built by hand despite living in land-locked Alberta. But this boat isn’t meant to set sail in the water, even if that’s what it was built with. That’s right, it’s an ice ship.

“My kids wanted [me to build] an igloo but I didn’t want the… ice over their head so this way, by doing a ship, they’ve still got the concept of the igloo they can enjoy because… there’s a lower deck,” Donnie White told Global News on Wednesday. “You can go inside the ship and play around underneath.”

READ MORE: Ice carver uses leftovers to build massive slide in front yard

White works in the oil sector and said he has some downtime in the winter so for the past few years, he’s built his children an ice sculpture to enjoy in front of their Red Deer home.

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“Three years doing the ice castle, the kids kind of wanted something a little bit different,” he said, explaining why he chose to build an ice ship this winter. “Next year is probably going to be a train.”

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View a photo gallery of Donnie White’s ice ship below:

The ice ship’s size and detail are impressive. White said it took him three weeks to build and he finished it just before Christmas.

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“The first week was just harvesting the ice. I actually had two friends give me a hand there just to get the ice out of the pond and up to the surface… I could handle it from there.

“As I had time, I would move them (ice chunks) to my property.”

The project involved over 200 ice blocks ranging in weight from nine to 27 kilograms.

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White explained he thinks the ship may be most impressive at night because of two projectors mounted on the lower deck that project 15 different shades of colours to simulate waves.

Anyone who wants to sneak a peek is more than welcome White said, adding he lives on Abel Close.

“You can’t miss it,” he said.

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