LONG BEACH–On November 21 a CHILL rolled into the city of Long Beach as The Queen Mary welcomed back its annual holiday tradition. Over the opening weekend, thousands of local residents and visitors bundled up to experience CHILL, the coolest place in Southern California featuring the Ice Kingdom, ice tubing, ice skating, holiday attractions, shopping, seasonal treats, entertainment and more.
Families walked in awe through the larger than life ice sculptures in the Ice Kingdom, hand carved from more than 2 million pounds of ice by Chinese artisans to depict the story of the Nutcracker. This year’s Ice Kingdom was brought to life with over 9 thousand hours of carving 55 blocks of glistening colored ice. The Ice Kingdom is kept at a chilling 9 degrees Fahrenheit and spans the length of half of a football field with more rooms and technically detailed carvings than ever before. Highlights of the Kingdom include the Nutcracker, the infamous battle scene, the castle standing over 32-feet tall and the replica of the Queen Mary ship.
“It’s inspiring to see thousands of families of all ages from little kids to their grandparents walk through the Ice Kingdom in awe. It truly is a unique holiday attraction for Southern California,” comments Steve Sheldon, Director of Entertainment Events at Queen Mary.
Visitors also enjoyed six-lane ice tubing down Glacier Glide, ice skating, rides on the world’s largest rocking horse, flying high on the world’s largest snowman bouncy house and galloping on the bucking reindeer. Santa’s Village welcomed visits with Santa and Mrs. Claus, a life size gingerbread house offered cookie decorating, and carolers and entertainers performed throughout the event daily.
CHILL festivities continue through January 5 with special holiday events planned throughout the season. December 4 presents the annual holiday Christmas Tree Lighting and free* entry to CHILL from 3-7:30 p.m. with an unwrapped toy donation to the Spark of Love Toy Drive. Complimentary holiday cookies and hot beverages provided by Keurig will be served. The tree lighting will take place at 7:30 p.m. Other festivities that evening include a live band and a choir performance as well as a figure skating performance by Tyler Pierce, a Novice Ladies National Champion.
CHILL also presents Merry Movie Nights every Tuesday at 8 p.m. December 3 presents the Polar Express, December 10 A Christmas Story, December 17 Love Actually and December 24 The Christmas Carol. Cabanas accommodating up to 10 people are available to rent during the movies for $300.
Tickets to CHILL start at $29.95 for adults and $14.95 for kids, and include The Ice Kingdom and choice of Ice Skating or Ice Tubing. Additional tickets for either Ice Skating or Ice Tubing are available for purchase and start at $12.95. Ice Skating Season Pass is available for $29.95. Lodging and special event packages are also available. CHILL will be open Tuesdays through Sundays through Jan. 5. For more information, including hours or to purchase tickets online, visit http://queenmary.com/chill/.
*Free entrance December 4 from 3:30 to 7 p.m. does not include entrance to The Ice Kingdom, ice tubing or ice skating. Please bring an unwrapped toy donation for the Spark of Love Toy Drive.