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We did start later than we could have weather-wise, a combination of pre-Christmas business, ice-storm distraction, and just not trusting it could stay that cold so early in the winter. I've attached a picture of this year's rink, taken from the toboggan hill on East Lynn Ave. Today, Sun. Jan. 5th, we had a very good turn-out with the mild weather. I'll send updates as we go, the weather this week will be a challenge I think.
We started the rink on Monday Dec. 30, and went at it pretty hard to take advantage of the excellent ice-making weather this past week. Our first skater braved the still bumpy ice on Wednesday and our first evening shinny game took place last night, Friday Jan. 3. The conditions allowed for one of the fastest start-ups I've seen; a sheet of base-ice from the ice-storm, followed by minus 20C temperatures. The rink is ready now for skaters of all skill levels.
As of Feb. 2 we have got the rink up and running again after the brief thaw. The rink is well-used on the weekends.
We currently have a crew of 3 rink-makers and no formal schedule; we just watch the forecast and plan maintenance/flooding times a few days in advance. The main two challenges with the East Lynn Park rink are that it sits on a slope, and square in the middle is a drainage grate which leads to the buried creek which used to run through the park. The drain is blocked with rigid foam insulation and a plastic sheet at the start of the season; once we get a good base it isn't much of a problem any more. The drain and slope obviously are a big challenge during a warm winter though, but not counting the January thaw, this has been one of the better rink-making years of the last 8 years or so.
We try to make the rink large enough to accommodate a shinny game and pleasure skating. At the north end, our more artistic crew-man likes to build interesting paths and mini-rinks to make skating fun and it's quite popular with kids learning how to skate.
it's been a challenge recently with the heavy snowfall then warm temperatures. We managed to salvage the lower, main rink and the upper part has been transformed into a slalom skateway. I'm attaching picures from Sunday Feb. 3, before the snowstorm, and today- Feb 18 (Family Day). The rink was very busy today with a steady stream of skaters of all ages and experience levels.