Skating outdoors during the winter is exhilarating. Whether playing hockey or figure skating, an outdoor rink offers another layer of enjoyment that an indoor rink can’t provide. Earlier this month, a temporary Westfield ice rink officially opened up at Gumbert Park. On March 1st, 2019, it will be torn down and restored back to its original usage. Until then, it’s open to the public.
What: Temporary Westfield Ice Rink
Where: Gumbert Park (5 Chestnut St)
When: Now through March 1, 2019
Hours of Operation: 3 pm to 9:10 pm M-F, 8 am to 9:10 pm Sat, 8 am to 8 pm Sun
Temporary Westfield Ice Rink
Why make Gumbert Park the location of a temporary Westfield ice rink? The park provided a large, level surface on which to create the ice rink. That helped minimize the cost of construction. Its placement near commercial properties and further away from residential areas made it more attractive as well from a traffic and noise pollution standpoint. During the winter, Gumbert Park’s basketball courts remain unused for the most part due to the weather. Repurposing the area for an ice rink allows it to be utilized during this time.
While hockey practice by local teams will take place during the week, no actual high school games take place here on the weekends. That leaves it open for public skating. Union Sports Arena (the organization in charge of the rink) also plans on allowing individuals and organizations to rent out the rink for fundraising and private events throughout the season. For a list of scheduled upcoming sessions, please visit the rink’s online calendar.
If the temporary Westfield ice rink makes money, the City itself shares in the profit. Also, if the temporary structure proves to be a success, it could justify creating a more permanent outdoor rink at another location. Only time will tell.
Christmas Tree Lot Reminder
Tomorrow’s the big day. The Westfield Area Y Men’s Club Christmas tree lot officially opens for the season. We offer beautiful Fraser and Balsam fir as well as other types of trees for sale. Pick up a wreath for your door, too. We could also still use some able-bodied volunteers to help load up the purchased trees into customers’ vehicles. If you’re interested in helping us out, please contact me.