WUFT News

Technical difficulties delay opening of downtown Gainesville ice skating rink

By on November 29th, 2012

Talia Medina, WUFT

Cooling coils being laid for ice rink

Alachua County residents will have to wait a few more days before they lace up skates and take to the ice.

Technical difficulties in the construction of Gainesville’s downtown ice skating rink will push back the grand opening to Monday, Dec. 3, at 4 p.m.

Midwest Display Inc., the company providing the rink, custom fitted the skating surface for Bo Diddley Plaza. Midwest Display President Mike Howard said his company is used to building rinks for much larger venues, and this installation has required some adjustment.

“We usually put these in amusement parks and places like that, so we’ve had to change the size of our equipment and the whole scope of how we do it,” he said.

If the rink has a successful turnout, Howard said he will expand the skating surface to cover the entire plaza next winter.

Businesses surrounding the plaza believe the rink will bring more shoppers into their stores. Though the manager of Harry’s Seafood, Bar & Grille in Gainesville was not available for an interview, Ocala manager Darin Hafer said a similar skating rink next to his store helps business and gives patrons something to do in the area.

“I don’t see any reason why it wouldn’t double the business,” Hafer said. “There’s something to do even if you’re old or not physically able to ice skate, so at least you’re able to come watch your grandkids or come look around and enjoy yourself.”

To account for the delay, Midwest Display will offer free skating for the first three days the rink is open.

George Pappas edited this story online.


This entry was posted in Arts and Entertainment, Business, Local and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
  • Rosa Alamo

    Love it is good families get to spend time together and we don’t have to go far to skate

 

More Stories in Arts and Entertainment

Though preliminary work has already begun on the Reilly Arts Center, Calero said full-scale construction will not break ground until September.

Ocala Symphony Orchestra Renovates Old Auditorium

The Ocala Symphony Orchestra is renovating the City Auditorium and renaming it The Reilly Arts Center. The renovations are part of the “Reinvent Tuscawilla Park” project, which aims to attract more people to the community.


Florida Theater Renovations A Bright Spot In Limited Music Venue Options

The downtown Gainesville music venue formerly known as The Florida Theater will reopen as The Venue in early October.


A finished tail lies on a table. A full silicone tail costs about $2,700, with additional costs for more customization.

Mermaid Tail Tailors ‘Make Dreams Come True’

Mertailor, a Crystal River-based company, offers individuals a chance to become mermaids. Eric Ducharme, founder of the company, crafts spandex and silicon tails to make dreams come true.


Come Home Exhibit

Puerto Rican Migrant Becomes Prominent Local Art Collector

Hector Puig has always had a knack for art. Yet Puig would have never imagined he would be one of Gainesville’s most well-known art collectors. Puig grew up in Utuado, Puerto Rico. When he was 13, he and his family [...]


On Monday, Sept. 1, 24-year-old turf groundskeeper John Wagnon fertilizes the Ben Hill Griffin Stadium after UF's opening game against Idaho was canceled on Saturday. The game was called after severe weather caused significant delays and left the field unsafe.

GALLERY: Groundskeeping for the Gators


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Day Sponsorship Payments
Underwriting Payments