Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Parrish business Ice Pro is pretty ... cool

Joe Rimer, local ice sculpting artist, works on a martini luge in the freezer at his Parrish-based business, Ice Pro. Rimer has set records with his ice sculptures and his work has been featured at a Super Bowl party for Beyonce, among others. TIFFANY TOMPKINS-CONDIE/Bradenton Herald

As if it wasn't cold enough outside Tuesday, I spent most of the morning in a zero-degree freezer.

The things we do for journalism.

It was worth it, though, because I got to learn all about a unique Parrish-based business, Ice Pro, for my feature story in today's Herald. Owner Joe Rimer and his team make fantastic ice sculptures, food displays and ice bars, complete with ice shot glasses and ice luges for pouring alcohol.

Joe's dad, Fred, helped convert a barn into an insulated workspace where Ice Pro has honed its craft, experimenting with different methods for creating crystal clear water to turn into giant blocks of ice. Their tools of the trade include chainsaws and a computer-assisted drill that make these fantastic, frozen works of art.

Rimer took Herald photographer Tiffany Tompkins-Condie and I on a tour, showing us how he uses a drill and an air hose to carve the delicate designs for a sculpture and how he painstakingly uses colored sand to fill in carved-out pockets of ice blocks to create corporate logos for events and parties. He was even nice enough to provide us with heavy duty coats and gloves, which we put on over our already winterized attire, as he showed us around the company's walk-in freezer

Ice Pro's work has been seen on A&E's "Shipping Wars," the "Today" show and even at the Super Bowl, for Beyonce's after party. Now that's pretty ... wait for it ... cool.

You can read more about Ice Pro in today's editions of the Herald and find out more about the business and see their work at or on their Facebook page.

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