Minnesota brothers' massive snow sculptures become local attraction

Every year, the Bartz brothers wow their community with a snowy work of art. This year's masterpiece is just in time for the Super Bowl.

For the seventh time, the Bartz brothers in Minnesota had been working hard to finish their annual snow sculpture. This year, it's a giant snow lobster.

And his name? Diggs (because lobsters dig into the sea floor and for Vikings Stefon Diggs' game-winning catch).

The giant, 19-foot snow sculpture was officially unveiled in late January.

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"We've been working 16 hours a day," said Austin Bartz, the oldest brother.

Austin, Trevor and Connor started creating works of frozen art in 2012.

"This all started when I caught a pufferfish in Florida one year and we thought, 'Oh, that would be cool to make out of snow,'" Austin said.

"It was just kind of a brotherly bonding activity. Something we could do in a day. And then eventually it just escalated more and more," Trevor added.

The idea snowballed. Over the years, they've created a pufferfish, walrus, shark, turtle, octopus, fish and now lobster.

The Bartz brothers' sculpture from last year. (Photo: Bartz Snow Sculptures)

But the winter tradition almost didn't happen this year because of the lack of snow in the Twin Cities metro area.

"We just kept pushing it back and back and basically it came to this last snow storm and we thought, 'If we don't get two to three inches, there will be no way,' and we got just enough that they could plow and get big enough piles," Trevor said. "If it would've been a day later, we wouldn't have been able to do this. So it was just perfect timing to still be able to complete it."

The brothers have been able to work quicker with the help of friends and family. What typically takes them two and a half weeks, they're pulling off in five days.

Just in time for Super Bowl 52.

"That was one of the main reasons we really wanted to do it this year, because of the Super Bowl," Austin said.

Austin, Trevor and Connor Bartz work on this year's snow sculpture in New Brighton. (Photo: Heidi Wigdahl)

The No. 1 reason why they do this every year is to help raise money for charity.

They are raising money for clean water through the organization One Day's Wages. One hundred percent of the donations (after credit card fees) go directly to projects that empower people to gain access to clean water and sanitation education.

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