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Title: Remembering the Ice Man
Runtime: 6 min
Director: Rich Polt
Placement: Honorable Mention
Competition: March, 2021
Synopsis: In Lancaster, Pennsylvania, the phonebook has 300+ listings for the “Herr” family name — including more than a dozen businesses with the Herr name. But if you were born in Lancaster after 1950, it’s possible you would never have heard of the C.L. Herr Ice Company, which closed its doors with the onset of home refrigeration. Not only did Christian L. Herr bring artificial ice to the region in the late 1800s, his family farm served as a de facto gathering spot for decades. Locals would congregate to skate on the Herr’s frozen ponds, enjoy flavored ice-shavings, and marvel at their collection of exotic birds.
In this documentary short, siblings Robert Herr and Bernice Herr Quay fondly recall the salad days of their youth growing up on the Herr family farm. Through interviews; the family’s rich collection of photos, articles, and artifacts; and a filmed tour of the Lancaster region, we were able to put this touching story on film.