It’s a far cry from breaking rocks in the hot sun on a chain gang. In New York’s Adirondack Mountains, inmates break ice on a frozen lake to make a giant winter palace.
A work crew from an area “shock” prison camp once again this year helped local volunteers create this mountain village’s lakeside ice palace — the shimmering centerpiece of the annual Saranac Lake Winter Carnival, starting Friday.
Under snowy skies this week, inmates marched onto the frozen lake in military formation in winter-weight prison greens and hard hats. Working alongside the volunteers, they were handed poles to break off blocks or head-high saws to cut through the ice. Others in the boot camp-style incarceration program were dispatched to the tall walls of the palace with buckets of slush to fit between blocks like mortar.