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Citizen-Z Cavan Young's 2004 film about the zamboni crisis

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2009 - 2010

Monday November 16th, 2009

This rink is scheduled to open on the 21st of November. At around noon, there were friendly maintenance staff working on the building from the inside. The walls in the change room were freshly painted, with big blue male and female for the bathrooms. The staff pointed out that a new door and window were installed, adding more light to the single brick room and improving visibility. The existing doors and window were re-framed. The rink itself was partially cleared of leaves and there was a little water on the pad. The compressors did not appear to be on yet. There was a City of Toronto poster up saying that the rink was scheduled to open on the 21st of November, weather permitting and to call 311 for more information.

Friday, November 20th, 2009

Overcast. The rink has ice. Lots of water remains on the surface though. The rink house is still under construction. The sinks and urinals are still not installed. The plumber in the building said he was hoping to finish his end of thing today. Only 2 of the big rink lights were raised by 10am this morning. Its unclear, unlikely... that the rink or building will be ready for opening day tomorrow.

Tuesday November 24 2009

light standards were erected on Saturday

All the light standards are up and apparently the electrician is in the building, hooking everything up. The sinks are mostly in, just one urinal left to go. New flooring is being laid. The two doors of the garage are being enlarged to accommodate bigger vehicles.

The compressors are not on, and the rink has no ice and no ice-making staff.

garage doors being widened

no ice
Wednesday Dec.2 2009 1.40 pm

This rink was supposed to open on Nov.21, but even today, it's still closed. The first thing to meet the eye in the rink parking lot is a big asphalt truck. A company is repaving the path around the outside of the building.

first to meet the eye

new paving, 10 days after "opening day"

Meanwhile, the ice looks terrific, despite a sunny day of 12 degrees celsius (although the sun is at its lowest at this time of the year, without much melting power). The mats are laid out, the benches in place, but the rink is locked, and there are no staff to say when it will be opened to skaters.

beautiful ice

all ready for skaters, but locked
Monday December 28, 2009

At 2.45 there were 4 pleasure-skaters on the ice, plus 1 rink guard. There were 12 skaters inside, some about to leave and a few just arriving, and 2 more rink guards, who were comfortably settled on a bench by the window and deep in conversation. I asked them for a holiday schedule and they were quick to go look for one, but there were none to take home. There were yellow signs of revised holiday hours posted prominently, saying that the rink would be open but unsupervised on New Year's Day.

I asked the rink guards, "why are there so few skaters? Is it always like this?" They said that sometimes it's busier, "but not on the holidays, because a lot of people are away."

Comparison to nearby Wedgwood Rink, an unsupervised compressor-cooled tennis pad: at the same time, there were 37 skaters on or around the ice, with more people arriving. And Valleyfield Rink, the same kind of unsupervised rink, had 31 skaters, with more coming down the rink steps.

Tuesday January 19, 2010

At 5.20, there were 10 shinny hockey players on the ice, all wearing helmets. One skater was sitting in the change room, talking to the zamboni driver. I asked about attendance and he said there are regulars who come for the public shinny. He said that the tennis pad rinks without boards have many more shinny players because they don't have to wear helmets, and he finds it tough to be always harrassing the skaters at this rink, to put on their helmets.

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Content last modified on December 08, 2014, at 08:51 AM EST