Contest: Guess When Somerville’s Snow Will Melt & Win Big at Union Square Donuts

[Updated 3/3/15: The time to enter #somsnow15 has ended and all of the guesses have been compiled. We’ve created a special page to serve as #somsnow15 headquarters until it’s time to announce the winner. Thanks to everyone who entered!]

Every year there’s a contest in our neighbor to the north to determine Ice Out on Lake Winnipesaukee (when the M/S Mt. Washington cruise ship can safely navigate between its ports). Locals enter their guesses for the date and time they think Ice Out will officially be declared by an area pilot who makes regular flights over the lake to monitor the ice.

Inspired by this cutthroat competition and looking to have some fun with the historic snowfall we’ve had, I’ve created the inaugural #somsnow15 contest to determine when the enormous snow pile in my backyard will melt. I contemplated using another large pile in Somerville, but I want to ensure that it’s not tampered with and mine is one of the biggest piles I’ve seen anywhere.

#somsnow15 11'9" side

Below you’ll find all the rules of the contest, before and after photos of the pile and some mostly scientific measurements of Mount #somsnow15. But before we get to that, here’s what you’ll win if your guess is correct: a $25 Union Square Donuts gift certificate, Somerville Beat stickers and, most important, bragging rights.

Here are the key #somsnow15 statisics: The pile is trapezoidal in shape, with the front side coming in at 11’9″, the back about 18′ and the two other sides at 27′. And it’s 7’8″ tall. That means it contains 3,113 cubic feet of snow and weighs in at 15,563 pounds or about seven metric tons. And here are some before and after photos to give you a sense of just how big this baby is.

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How to Enter

For this contest, the snow will be considered melted in Somerville when there is less than one square foot left from my gigantic snow pile. I’ll monitor it closely and post photos of it as it melts. I’ll also post all of the guesses once they’re in.

Your official entry will consist of a comment on this post that includes:

  • A valid email address (will not be displayed, only used to contact the winner)
  • An exact date and time for when the snow will melt (example: April 17 at 9:30 a.m.)
  • Must be submitted by Sunday, March 1 at midnight
  • Only one guess per person

The closest guesser without going over the date and time will be declared the winner. You will receive an awesome prize pack containing a $25 Union Square Donuts gift certificate, Somerville Beat stickers and bragging rights! If there’s a tie, both of the entrants will be declared winners and receive the prize. We’ll contact the winner via email once they have been determined and announce it on the Somerville Beat as well as all of our social media channels.

Please share the contest widely using the hashtag #somsnow15 and tag us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram! If you have any questions, please leave a comment on this post or email me at

Good luck!

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