Posted: Apr 29, 2014 5:43 PM by Pat Shingleton
The Nenana Ice Classic began in 1917 by bridge builders crossing the Tenana River new Fairbanks, Alaska. As noted in a previous column, when the river froze-over, work stopped and speculation as to an ice break began the wagering. Cash prizes are awarded to those who guess the exact minute the ice breaks. A specially constructed tripod contraption determines the winner. Made of wooden logs, a wire attached to the top is strung to a clock onshore. The clock stops when the melting ice shifts the tripod 100 feet. This year there were 24 tickets that picked this year's winning time -3:48 P.M. Alaska Standard Time on April 25th. The jackpot raised $363,627 as 300,000 tickets were sold with at least 24 winning tickets already claimed.