Central Park snow bear sculptures delight cooped-up New Yorkers

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Bear-y cute snow sculptures in Central Park are melting away the winter blues and warming hearts on the Upper West Side.

Artist Heide Hatry has spent every day for the past two weeks at the park’s 86th Street entrance, shaping and repositioning her frosty works. By Saturday, she had created 17 miniature bears. 

The exhibit has attracted hundreds of cooped-up New Yorkers, who stop in their tracks to watch Hatry, 55, painstakingly transform the snow into animals.

Manhattanite Marisa Miller Wolfson told The Post that her 8-year-old daughter stood mesmerized as Hatry created a bird.

“This has cheered up so many in these unsure times,” said Wolfson, a documentary filmmaker and cookbook author. 

To create story lines, Hatry uses signs and props retrieved from nearby trash bins. Photos posted to her Instagram page show one snow bear holding a guitar and another sitting in a chair. 

One of her pieces is especially endearing — and funny: a mom cuddling with her cubs in front of a sign that reads “Snowbanksy 2021,” a nod to the anonymous graffiti artist.

Hatry is a stickler for detail, using black objects for the bears’ eyes and ears. She even goes so far as to give expressions to her critters.  

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Heide Hatry sculpted these snow bears in Central Park.

J.C.Rice

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Hatry has spent the past two weeks creating the bears.

J.C.Rice

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Hatry has also pointed to climate change being a serious threat to polar bears.

J.C.Rice

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Onlookers take pictures in Central Park of the snow bears.

J.C.Rice

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Recently, Hatry has been encouraging others to let their creative juices flow, too.

“I have also invited children to come in, build their own bears or play with them,” she said.

Behind Hatry’s lightheartedness, though, is a serious message: Global warming poses a threat to polar bears.

“They made lots of people smile, and I hope we realize that they need our help to survive the upcoming decades,” Hatry wrote on Instagram.

In her post, Hatry made a pitch for donations to Polar Bears International and uploaded a photo of one of her sculptures.

In the snow, she had etched the words “Let us chill.”

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