Profile: The Ice Madam


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Stephanie Prater




Crested Butte, Colorado

Claim to Fame:

As Crested Butte’s event coordinator, part of Prater’s job is to make drinking at CB a more memorable experience. And the Ice Bar—dozens of gigantic, ice-filled catering pans and garbage cans stacked, then drenched with water—is her crowning achievement. For the past two years, Prater has overseen the annual creation of the 15-seat bar, located midmountain near the base of the Twister lift. Despite fluctuating temperatures and almost-daily watering required to freeze it in place, Prater hopes to have the Ice Bar up and flowing by Thanksgiving.

Her Other Claim to Fame: Since 2002, Prater has been ski-film star Seth Morrison’s main squeeze.

Steph’s Ice Maidens: Though obviously a provocative dresser in her own right (she’s been spotted in a sequin-scaled snake suit), during the Ice Bar’s inaugural Prater outfitted the Ice Bar’s all-female staff in thrift-store furs. “I wore this teeny-tiny Tommy Hilfiger faux-fur coat, says former bartender Mary Cohen, who was also known to work—and ski—in a miniskirt and Catholic-schoolgirl uniform. “It was so cold it was brutal. Last year, Prater went upscale, dressing her divas in faux-mink coats from Victoria’s Secret and reversible faux-fur and pleather jackets.

Ice Bar Antics: While the bar was more popular last year, its first year was the rowdiest. “A local kid sculpted a woman’s bust out of ice, says Cohen, “and we’d pour shots down between her boobs. Men would beg us to flash our breasts for money, and we’d pose with guests on top of the bar like cheeseball Playboy bunnies, she recalls. “There are dozens of pictures of us in bad vacation photo albums across the country.

The Fur Bikini: Prater insists it’s for Seth. “He was spending two long, cold months in Alaska, and it was a gift for him, a kind of ‘Remember me?’ to warm him up, she says. “He loved it, but he’s a shy guy, so he’s bummed that it’s been shared.
—Jenn Weede

October 2004