PHOTOS: Indiana family’s traditional ‘ice tree’ back for another year

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

INDIANAPOLIS — Veal’s Ice Tree is back in action! But if you want to see it you will have to drive out to Indiana this weekend.

Creating the ice tree is a family tradition that’s been going strong for 50 years. The “ice tree” is not really a tree but a sculpture the family constructs on their own.

“First we start out with some old junky 2x4s, binder twine, rusty nails, we build a frame, and this year, we wanted a cave, so we put some other lumber and put some plastic,” Janet Veal-Drummond told WXIN.

According to the tree’s website, traditional garden hoses with ordinary nozzles are tied to the frame.

“Tree limbs are added around the frame. The fresh cut brush are gathered from field fence-rows. After the ice becomes solid, more brush is added, the hoses are relocated, and the cycle starts again,” the website says.

The family told WXIN it takes days to perfect the shape and height of the tree. After the tree freezes they add food coloring to make it stand out even more.

It has been especially hard to create the tree this winter. Due to unusually high temperatures, the tree has melted a few times already. However, the recent cold weather gave the family some hope, and this past week visitors were able to admire the 20-foot tall sculpture.

The family is urging everyone who wants to see the tree to visit this weekend, because temperatures will rise again starting Monday.

Veal’s Ice Tree is located at:
11333 Southeastern Ave.
Indianapolis, IN 46259

For directions and more information on the process of building the Ice Tree visit www.vealsicetree.wix.com.