A new outdoor community rink is drawing crowds to downtown Truro, N.S.
“I think it's great,” says resident Cathy Helpard. “The community can get out, it's really quick and easy access for us. It's free and it's a great way to spend the day with the kids.”
Skaters have been lacing up their blades and hitting the ice since last weekend, when the ice surface opened in front of the town's new library.
“It's just a perfect opportunity to get out on a beautiful day and get some exercise and have fun,” says resident Lori Macwha.
There outdoor rink is a 13,000 square-foot surface, compared to about 17,000 for an average indoor arena.
“It's a little wider and a little shorter and has been receiving use from the very early part of the day through until well after dark,” says Doug MacKenzie, parks recreation and culture director.
The town has started a skate drive so people can donate older skates in good condition to those who may not be able to afford their own. More than 50 pairs have come in so far.
Shannon Jarvis, active community coordinator, says the popularity of the rink has made for a wonderful success story.
“We weren't really sure what to expect, as far as participation even, and it's been beyond all of our expectations. The community has completely embraced it,” says Jarvis.
The refrigeration unit can maintain ice up to plus eight degrees so, if the weather cooperates, MacKenzie says the rink could be operational until the end of March.