GRAND FORKS — It's called the Empire Ice Thickness Challenge.

Each prediction costs $20. The goal: Guess how thick the ice is on an undisclosed section of the Red River in Grand Forks next Friday at noon.

Half of the pot goes to the winner, and the other half goes to the Empire Arts Center. The theater says revenue is down by about 40% due to the pandemic restrictions.

"It's a way to get the word out about the Empire, because we aren't able to have events right now, and we want to make people know we are still here and will be open soon for events," said executive director Debra Pflughoeft-Hassett.

The measuring spot will be announced one hour prior to the measurement. To find out how you can make a prediction, visit

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