Royal Oak, Mich. (WXYZ) – Royal Oak’s Winter Blast is off next weekend. Event planners are worried that the cold weather will keep people from going.
They have decided to push back two weeks for security purposes and to help local businesses.
7 First Alert meteorologist Kevin Jeans predicted the forecast had a lot to do with the postponement. Dangerously cold temperatures are likely.
Event planners make this call because they want people to have fun and not get frostbite.
“A lot of people come on Friday, Saturday, Sunday,” said Kenny Yan, owner of Winter Blast.
Winter Blast is something that Yan has been eagerly waiting for.
Last year, business was booming and he was counting on another lucrative weekend.
“I’m really glad they made a decision and pushed it back two weeks,” Yan said.
Originally, the winter blast was set for February 4 to February 7, but some weather models showed air temperatures could be as low as minus 2 degrees Celsius.
“We got some long-term forecasters, including Kevin Jeans, who were very appreciative that there was potential for some nice Arctic temperatures,” Witz said.
Vitz is the promoter of the event. He says that if the temperature drops, the attendance will also drop.
“We’ve experienced these types of weekends in Detroit and we’ll actually go from 25,000 to 400 when you have that type of weather — and that may not be the weather,” Vitz said.
Vitz admitted that pushing the event back two weeks was a gamble.
He says the decision was a collaborative one between the vendors and the city commissioners.
“I can’t leave my kids outside in negative 2-degree wind chill for more than a few minutes without getting frostbite,” said Royal Oak Commissioner Brandon Colo. “We want them to enjoy the outdoors.”
In addition to free ice skating, the event features food trucks, sledding, and other family-friendly activities.
Yan is hoping attendees will whet the appetite for Vera Asian.
Yan said, “I think it’s a really good decision because in the cold weather, I don’t think people will come out, especially for an outdoor event.”
In partnership with Mount Brighton, Winter Blast will have skiing and snowboarding this year.
The new dates for the event are February 17 though February 19.