Ice skating returning to Chattanooga riverfront
October 18th, 2015by Barry Courterin Local Regional NewsRead Time: 2 mins.
Ice on the Landing iceskating returns to Chattanooga
Putting a temporary ice skating rink on The Green at Ross's Landing proved so successful last winter, organizers are bringing an even larger version back this year. They are also opening it a week earlier, offering a season pass and lessons.
Ice on the Landing will open Nov. 20 and be here through Jan. 18, according to Chattanooga Presents owner Carla Pritchard. It will operate with evening and weekend hours until mid-December when school breaks for the holidays; then it will be open daily.
Pritchard said the upcoming version of Ice on the Landing will be almost twice as big (60-by-100 feet versus 50-by-70 feet), and will come with more rental skates, a bigger tent/staging area, a larger tent for hosting birthday parties and improved landscaping to better handle the melting ice and make the site look better.
Lauren Duke, left, and Kate Spurling are among...
Photo by Tim Barber /Times Free Press.
"We are moving it farther away from the buildings to get it out of the shadow of the buildings, which should help with evaporation, and we are angling it down the hill and adding rubber mats or decking around the perimeter to provide walkways and help with drainage."
She said upgrades include better lighting, three fire pits and more seating for people who want to simply watch.
Chattanoogans Becky and Todd Sharp took their children, Grace, 9, and Jackson, 7, to the rink several times last year, including a couple of night visits "under the lights," and on one occasion took a dozen or so visiting relatives.
"It was so much fun to watch my kids skate for the first time," she said. "It was also so wonderful to see the older cousins help the little ones out. We are so excited it is coming back."
Last year was the first for the rink in the location, Pritchard said, and her staff learned several things from the experiment. The first was with more than 30,000 people turning out to skate, the demand is there.
The second was how to do it better.
"We will have nicer landscaping, with maybe some Christmas trees and better lighting," she said. "We want it to look nice."
Chattanooga Presents is again working with Magic Ice USA of Orlanda, Fla., which will provide the rink, skates, tents and staff. Skates can be rented as part of the admission fee of $10 for anyone over 12 and $8 for younger skaters. The fee is good for two hours of ice time.
Gift cards also will be available for purchase. Also, the volunteer Ice Patrol, comprising members of the local roller-skate hockey team and other experienced skaters, will be on hand to offer tips to novices.
This year, skaters can buy a season pass for $100 that allows them unlimited time on the ice. Pritchard said Bill Matthews, who helped at the rink last year, will offer a four-week skills course on Saturday mornings from 8:30-9:30.
Contact Barry Courter at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6354.