For a number of years, there was a most remarkable event held in Madison during the coldest month of the year. The ice on Lake Monona would be frozen solid and scores of people would flock together, bundled for the January weather to enjoy ‘Kites On Ice”.
Today Historic Madison WI Photo Group on Facebook posted a photo of James Wilson and myself on the lake while thrilling to the sights and sounds. (And no, we are not the ones on strings!)
There was no way not to become a 7-year old when out on the ice with the colorful and huge array of kites flying about. And these were no ordinary kites! From all over the world people would come to showcase their talents with the artistry of kiting. Inside the Monona Terrace, there would be workshops and chances to meet the talented ones who mastered what many of us as kids never did.
As I looked out at frozen Lake Monona today I thought how exciting it would be if the event were still a Madison moment about to happen. There is enough ice for the whole event this year! I am not sure as to the reason why the kiting event left the city. Perhaps attempts to make it too big back-fired, or someone wanted too much money to host the event, or funding dried up. Those are usually the reasons good things in the city disappear.
Those who recall the event can smile over the magic of the kites and the way January once was on the Madison isthmus.