Published: Dec 02, 2012 10:34 PM EST
Updated: Dec 02, 2012 10:42 PM EST

CAPE CORAL, Fla. - It may have been close to 80 degrees over the weekend but it was a Winter Wonderland in Cape Coral. Thousands of residents and tons of snow made their way to the Century Link Holiday Festival of Lights.
 
Cape Coral resident Jacob Kimsel is from Hawaii so he can relate to the kids' excitement, "Oh it's awesome, to see it for the first time!"

The popular attraction was in danger of being cancelled this year, but locally owned business Vapin' in the Cape stepped up and sponsored the snow and the smiles.

"They're loving it. The line has just been going on and on for hours now, picking up snow balls. It's really sweet," said Kimsel.

Sarah Brown took her 10-month old son Declan down the sledding hill for the first time.

"It's a really great experience especially for people from Florida that have never seen snow," she said.

The man-made slope was created with the help of a special machine, crunching 20,000 pounds of ice. And even though the white stuff was getting a bit slushy in the Florida air, no one seemed to notice. 

"I'm sure it's melting a little bit but for the most part it seems to be doing a pretty good job," said Kimsel.

The snowdrift was just one of the many fun-filled attractions at this year's Century Link Holiday Festival of Lights. Vendors, local businesses, and even Santa himself stopped by to admire the tree and celebrate the start of the holiday season.