Ice Sales for Burning Man Soar - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Ice Sales for Burning Man Soar

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Ice is a hot commodity for Burning Man. Sales this year are soaring so high, that the local ice distributor in Reno has resorted to renting out an extra warehouse just to keep up with the demand.

"I'm buying 40 pounds of dry ice and 40 pounds of regular ice, just to get us through the first half of the week," said Jamie Hatfield as he loaded up his U-Haul at Crystal Ice in Reno. He's been to Burning Man for 15 years and has it down to the numbers.

"We're buying a lot!" said Courtney Fay of Reno. "I think we have about 60 pounds of each and we'll have to buy more out there."

Good thing that Crystal Ice in Reno plans for the demand they see every year.

"We log how many tons we sell each year," says Kurt Decal, General Manager of Crystal Ice. "This year the economy is coming back, and we see that in ice sales. I mean they'll have 65,000 people on the Playa this year and they all need ice."

Not only are they trucking in ice twice a day this week, they rent out and refrigerate an extra warehouse to stock up so they don't sell out. Because the Burners are buying it from their dock and from every convenience store and grocery store in the area, and Crystal Ice distributes to them all.

"We have 17 trailers out there for those who need ice when they get there," Decal said. "Last year we sold 47 trailers full of ice there and this year we're already planning on at least 50 trailers full of ice because there will be more people there. It's a very busy time of the year but this really is an event a lot of local businesses depend on."

The additional warehouse is stocked and ready. It costs them close to $150,000 to rent and refrigerate for the month, but Decal says that's an investment that more than pays off.

"Each truck holds 20 pallets, each pallet is 2,000 pounds of ice. Without the extra space we'd never keep up with the demand," Decal says. "This is great for the local economy."

The first swell in business has hit, he says. And then there will be another big swell on Thursday for those just going for the weekend. And it's all paying off for Northern Nevada.

Written by Erin Breen 

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