Carnival theme vote is tonight

Five themes to be considered for 2025 Carnival

SARANAC LAKE — It’s time to decide the 2025 Saranac Lake Winter Carnival theme. Tonight, the public is invited to be part of the Carnival Committee and vote on one of five theme suggestions at a 5:30 p.m. meeting at the Elks Lodge on the corner of Bloomingdale Avenue and Church Street.

As is tradition, anyone who shows up gets a vote.

The themes up for nomination this year are “Music Legends,” “Cheeseburger in Paradise,” “Fire and Ice,” “Once Upon a Carnival” and “Steampunk.”

In all, 994 people participated in an Enterprise straw poll on the themes, which ran from March 18 to April 1. This poll is not scientific, and its results represent only the opinions of internet users who chose to participate.

Cheeseburger in Paradise took 32% of the vote with 314 votes. Music Legends took 24% of the vote with 242 votes. Fire and Ice took 22% of the vote with 215 votes. Steampunk took 12% of the vote with 123 votes. Once Upon a Carnival took 10% of the vote with 100 votes.

Last month, a list of 85 suggestions was whittled down to these five themes.

There are to be no last-minute suggestions at the meeting tonight, according to new rules from the Carnival Executive Committee.

Carnival Committee Secretary Nancy LaBombard said there will be two round of voting. In the first round each voter will have two votes to cast. This will narrow the list down to three options. Then, in the final round, everyone will have one vote to select the 2025 theme.

LaBombard said in the case of a tie, they’ll vote again.

The themes

Music Legends has been in the running for Carnival theme for several years now. Music is always a big part of Carnival, from the fireworks shows, to the parade, the concerts and playlists all over town.

This theme would specifically highlight the stars whose music made major impacts through the decades — from pop stars to rock icons.

Cheeseburger in Paradise would be a tropical, beach party theme heavily inspired by the musician Jimmy Buffett. Local artist Mike Burpoe, who pitched this theme, said next year’s Carnival is the first to be eligible after Buffett’s passing in September 2023.

“The Chief Parrothead has always preached to be kind to your neighbors, take things slow and make time for a little wandering,” Burpoe wrote in his pitch to the Carnival Committee.

The trademark for the term “Cheeseburger in Paradise” has expired, Burpoe explained, including links and research to back up his argument.

Official Carnival photographer Meachele Manchester pitched the Fire and Ice theme. She said as she photographs Carnival events she sees all the cool ways people have of illuminating the ice — chiefly the Ice Palace — as well as the fires for warmth and entertainment like at the Mount Pisgah torchlight skiing.

She said this could be expanded to things that glow, too, as glow sticks are common with the festivities. Plenty of things glow, she said, giving the example of bioluminescent deep-sea fish.

Once Upon a Carnival is a fairy tale theme with a rich catalogue of folklore, cautionary tales, whimsical lands and magical creatures to pull inspiration from.

These could be ancient stories like those of the Brothers Grimm, more modern ones like the works of J.R.R. Tolkien or C.S. Lewis or 21st century renditions like “Shrek.” Fairy tales are often stories traditionally written for children which have survived the ages because of their moral, emotional and philosophical impact on adults.

These tales come with a host of talking animals, winged creatures, giants and magicians and come from all corners of the globe.

Steampunk is a sci-fi aesthetic combining the dress, tools and ideas of the 19th century Victorian era with speculative fiction about a divergent path of technological progression. It imagines what the world would look like if steam became the main method of machine power instead of electricity. Think dirigibles and zeppelins powered by steam as the main mode of transportation, people wearing top hats with cogs on them, mechanical arms and plenty of welding goggles.

This form of retrofuturism has inspired countless works of art in literature, fashion, film and the visual arts.

The Carnival Committee will also vote on officers and board members for the upcoming year tonight.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper? *

Starting at $4.75/week.

Subscribe Today