Frozen Dead Guy Days 2023 is officially chilled.
Frozen Dead Guys Days (FDGD) is a celebrated, world-renowned festival held every March in the small mountain town of Nederland, Colorado. The event’s organizers have decided to press pause for 2023.
FDGD celebrates the weird but true story of Norwegian native “Grandpa” Bredo Morstel who became a sensation in 1995 when his frozen body was discovered in a Nederland Tuff Shed. Bredo’s family believed in cryogenics and transported his body to the United States from Norway after he died in 1989. To this day, Grandpa is cryogenically frozen under dry ice in Nederland, and the festival full of frozen fun honors him annually.
Festival co-owner Sarah Mosely Martin stated,“FDGD 2023 is canceled due to numerous factors including our own operational hurdles returning after a two-year COVID hiatus, a lack of partnership with the Town of Nederland, and the challenges of large event production on the safety and security fronts.”
Martin combined forces in 2019 with Amanda MacDonald who coordinated and grew this event to international acclaim. Martin secured federal and local COVID grant funding after the festival was canceled a few days before the event in March, 2020. Two years later, FDGD 2022 came back in full swing with 20,000 plus attendees, over 230 musicians, multiple food vendors, nearly a dozen participatory contests, and the ever popular Coffin Races. Reviving the festival required months of negotiations with the Town of Nederland that resulted in triple the budget expenditures compared to past years. The 20 inches of snow that fell the night before the festival’s Friday kickoff also created more costs and hurdles for both Town and its production.
“FDGD started as a small festival and took on a life of its own. We have experienced growing pains over the past many years, as has Nederland,” said Martin, who was a longtime volunteer prior to 2019. “At this time, we regretfully have to reassess how to go forward with every intention of honoring the cultural and historical value of Grandpa’s story and still be fiscally responsible. It means so much to so many including the state of Colorado, our amazing festivarian community, and all the loyal Nederland locals who have put their heart and soul into the festival. This has been a really hard decision, but Town put the nail in the coffin when their wrap report stated that they would like to keep the festival in Nederland but refuse to work with the festival’s current owners again and stipulated that Guercio Field could no longer be used.”
Until a plan is in place for the 20th Frozen Dead Guy Days Festival in 2024, the website frozendeadguydays.org
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