See also Site Map
The important distinction is “recommended” (your own choice of what kind of helmet to wear, or no helmet) and “mandatory” which for Canadian rinks means only a helmet approved by the CSA, no U.S. or European certification accepted.
Vancouver: –There is no shinny hockey outdoors in Vancouver.
Calgary: helmets recommended for any-age indoor and outdoor pleasure-skating and any-age outdoor shinny hockey.
Edmonton: helmets recommended for any-age indoor and outdoor pleasure-skating, and for any-age outdoor shinny hockey. 5 city-run rinks plus a lot of community ones. Wheelchairs and skate aids are explicitly permitted at regular skating times; no provisions for babies.
Regina: helmets recommended for any-age indoor and outdoor pleasure-skating and any-age outdoor shinny hockey. The City of Regina maintains 60 outdoor ice rinks at 41 different sites. Most of these rinks have push-button lights. Plus one speed-skating oval. There are also 8 hockey rinks with push-button lights (local group maintenance).
Winnipeg: helmets recommended for any-age indoor and outdoor pleasure-skating and any-age outdoor shinny hockey. They have 40 outdoor rinks in parks (2 per ward, about 40), wholly maintained by the city, plus a lot more hockey rinks at locally-run community centres.
Mississauga: only have 3 city-run outdoor rinks – helmets recommended for any-age outdoor pleasure-skating, helmets mandatory for any-age outdoor shinny hockey.
Toronto: helmets mandatory for under six pleasure-skating, indoors and outdoors, and mandatory for any-age shinny hockey, indoors out outdoors. Exception: Harbourfront's Natrel Rink has no mandatory helmet requirements for any age.
Ottawa: madatory multi-impact helmet at all city of Ottawa public skating sessions at indoor arenas for kids aged 10 and under or if identify as a weak skater of any age. (City of Ottawa Policy). Helmets recommended for any-age outdoor pleasure-skating and any-age outdoor shinny hockey. See their https://ottawa.ca/en/residents/recreation-and-parks/skating#outdoor-skating-rink-rules. By far the most rinks in Ottawa are outdoors (details below) -- 258 of them, most maintained by volunteers, some with field houses and city supervisory staff. The City of Ottawa website calls Ottawa “the city that lives and breathes hockey.” Wheelchairs, strollers, and "E-Z Glide" skate aids are explicitly permitted at regular skating times.\\ update in 2019: CSA-approved helmets are required for people in wheelchairs and strollers. Not permitted: Carrying children on the ice (including baby carriers).
Montreal: about 250 city-maintained outdoor natural ice rinks (4 compressor-cooled), many with hockey boards. No helmet rules at outdoor rinks.
Fredericton: have 7 natural and one artificial outdoor ice rinks, 6 indoor – even indoors pleasure-skating is helmets recommended. Outdoors there are no helmet rules.
For Calgary: there are about 180 community centres of which about 90% have ice rinks. They are leased to neighbourhood associations for between $10 and $15 a year and that way the local groups can run them as they choose. Many have firepits, hockey boards, and some kind of ice resurfacing equipment. There also 5 city-run outdoor rinks (fully maintained by City Staff – pleasure skating only, no fire pits, no shinny hockey) and 44 Adopt-a-Rinks (maintained by volunteers- supported by City Staff - pleasure skating only, no fire pits, no hockey, no extra lighting). ([email protected]; www.calgary.ca/parks)
Example of Stanley Park Rink in Calgary, from rink participant Mark Chambers:
For Ottawa, from Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services manager Kelly Robertson: