“It was crazy,” said Jeff Chase. He, along with co-organizer Robin Mazumder, put the word out with the help of Make Something Edmonton and on Twitter using the hashtag #yegsnowfight.
“We were expecting maybe a hundred people. We woke up the next morning and there was about 1,000 emails.”
Once they saw the response, the pair decided to use the event to support the Edmonton Food Bank and asked those taking part to bring in donations.
Mazumder said there was no strategy or planning for setting up teams or sides -- just a desire to get people outside and to embrace Edmonton’s winter weather.
“It’s so easy to get bogged down by work and our life sometimes, he said. “We forget to have fun. (This is) part of our Canadian identity.”
Cody Woywitka and his family spent the early part of the fight building a defensive snow fort on a hill overlooking the battle ground.
He said they heard about the event online and jumped at the chance to take part.
“We enjoy the camaraderie that Edmonton has,” he said.
“When I was a kid, I was allowed to do it. And the kids now, they’ve lost some of that.”
While Chase calls himself a “pro” when it comes to hurling snow, Mazumder grew up in Victoria and says he didn’t get much of a chance to play in the snow when he was younger.
“To come here and have an opportunity to throw snow, to ski in it and play in it, I think it appeals to people. It’s about going back to what it was like when we were kids.