It's Snow Problem — Just Make Snow Sculptures!

This winter an East Haven teen is crafting larger-than-life snow sculptures in the front yard of her family's Thompson Avenue home.

Sarah Parlato with her most recent snow sculpture, a larger-than-life green alligator! Credit: Parlato Family
Sarah Parlato with her most recent snow sculpture, a larger-than-life green alligator! Credit: Parlato Family
It's often said that when life gives you lemons, you should make lemonade, to make the best out of the situation at hand. 

Well, one crafty East Haven teenager has taken that train of thinking to the next level: when winter gives us significant snowfalls, she makes it into artwork.

'A Lot of Fun to Do'

Over the past two years, Sarah Parlato has been crafting snow sculptures in the front yard of her family's Thompson Avenue home, much to the delight of family, friends and neighbors.

Following last week's storms, the 17-year-old Lauralton Hall School senior created her most labor intensive work yet: a giant green alligator, which was some 15 feet long and 5 feet wide.

"It was a lot of fun to do," she told Patch, adding that the larger-than-life reptile was getting quite a bit of attention over the weekend.

"We saw people driving by and slowing down. And some of the people in the trucks were doing double takes," she said with a laugh. 

'I Just Go Out There And Do It'

Earlier this month, with plenty of snow on the ground from recent storms, Parlato created a sculpture specifically in honor of Valentine's Day.

"I did a red heart and it had wings on it," she said.

The teenager has completed about a half a dozen sculptures in total.

"It's just a spur of the moment thing," she said. "And then I just go out there and do it."

Another one of her most ambitious creations was last year, after Winter Storm Nemo, when she sculpted a giant clown fish.

"It was for the lead character in the movie 'Finding Nemo,'" she explained.

'You Can Always Move the Snow'

Parlato said while the length of time can vary depending on the individual project, the sculptures take a total of about four to six hours to create.

And that includes the time to diagram the piece, move and shape the snow, as well as shading in and coloring the finished work with cake frosting dye.

"It's a lot of layout and looking at pictures," she said of the creative process. But she added that the good thing about working with snow: is it's a very forgiving artistic medium.

"You can always move the snow, it's not like carving," she said. "You can always fix things."

'Just a Little Bit Bigger'

And while the sculptures can be time consuming, Sarah noted that it is usually not a solitary effort.

She said her brother and sister will often lend a helping hand during the sculpting process. And her father, Fred Parlato, helps, too.

"He has a plow, so he moves all the extra snow up together on the lawn for me," Sarah said.

Although she loves art and being artistic, Parlato said when she graduates high school this June, it won't be her focus as she moves on to college and thinks about choosing a career.

But, she said creating and crafting snow sculptures were always be a fun, winter time activity that she will enjoy.

"It's like building a family snowman," Sarah said. "But just a little bit bigger."
Becki Pastor February 25, 2014 at 01:44 PM
This is just a tiny fraction of just how awesome Sarah Parlato is!! She was an AMAZING color guard captain this year in the EHHS Yellow Jackets Marching Band and she is one of the kindest, smartest, funniest kids I know....we are lucky to have her here in East Haven and I for one am sad (but proud) that she'll be leaving to head off to college in the fall!! Here's to another great EH kid doing something cool!!!
Krissy Montesanto February 25, 2014 at 04:09 PM
I agree with Becky 100% !!!!!! The whole Parlato family are awesome.
lisa February 25, 2014 at 10:32 PM
Great job Sarah!!!!!!
Jaimie Cura February 26, 2014 at 01:10 PM
These are amazing!


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