Kites in Winter?

Brandon interviewing Alivia Paine, 10, Clear Lake, IA
Brandon interviewing Alivia Paine, 10, Clear Lake, IA

Brandon interviews Alivia Paine, 10, at the Color the Wind Festival in Clear Lake, Iowa.

Many people have flown a kite before, but not many have flown one on a frozen lake. On February 17, people from around the United States traveled to Clear Lake, Iowa, to do just that.

This year’s Color the Wind Festival featured more than 50 kiters who flew more than 100 kites on a frozen Clear Lake.

Larry and Kate Day held the first Color the Wind Festival in 2002. They came up with the idea because they wanted something fun to do in the middle of winter.

There were many different kinds of kites, including some that were more than 100 feet long. Popular shapes and styles included dragons, geckos, squids, bears, whales, and pandas. Everyone who attended the festival was encouraged to bring and fly their own kites, but some people just came to watch.


Large kites

Several people brought large kites to the festival.


Barbara Meyer of Minneapolis, Minnesota, flew one of the most exciting kites at this year’s festival. It was in the shape of a Chinese dragon. Meyer said that the kite was her favorite because “he’s special and very cute.” She enjoys the festival because the “frozen lake gives so much room to fly kites.”

Another flyer who traveled to Clear Lake was Michael Sherman of Columbus, Ohio. Sherman, who was flying five kites including a huge gecko, talked about how easy it is to fly kites.

“As long as you have air, you can fly these,” Sherman said. A special kite helps keep the larger ones afloat. Because the kites are so big, Sherman said, “we drill holes in the ice to anchor the kites below the ice.”

Many kids attended the festival, including 10-year-old Alivia Paine of Clear Lake. She enjoyed the “pretty kites and all the colors.”

Aiden Roe, 11, from nearby Algona, was flying his own box kite. He encouraged others to get into kite flying because, he said, “it isn’t too hard to do.”


Photos courtesy of the author