Break out the skates!
The Minot Recreation Commission announced that the city's outdoor ice rinks will officially open to public usage at 2 p.m. Sunday. A hockey and pleasure sheet apiece will be maintained through the winter at Roosevelt and Polaris parks, each location complete with outdoor lights and a warming house.
There will be a supervisor in charge of each location, with Jackie Jeter at Roosevelt and JoEllen Halbert at Polaris. They can be reached at 720-0423 and 852-8805, respectively.
When school is in session, the rinks will be open from from 4 to 9:30 p.m. on weekdays except for Wednesdays, when they will be closed, and from 2 until 9:30 p.m. on weekends. Warming houses will be closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, and from Dec. 26-30 holiday hours will be in effect, from 2 to 9 p.m. New Year's Eve will have an earlier closing time, at 7 p.m., and the rinks will be closed for New Year's Day. After that, they should resume their normal schedule of 2 to 9 p.m. daily through the end of the season, Feb. 15.
An additional fifth rink will also be available for daytime skating at Corbett Field, as its warming house has not yet been recovered from damage done by the 2011 flood.
Staff from Minot Park District's maintenance department will upkeep the ice and amenities at the three locations.
"Every day we go over them and clean them, put water down if we need to," said Brian Mattson, head of the department.
In addition, MRC has been sponsoring free indoor skating time at All Seasons Arena, on the North Dakota State Fairgrounds, making the sheet there available for a couple of hours on selected days. People can bring their own skates or rent a pair at the arena, with an invitation extended to skaters of all ages.
The next free skate session will be on Saturday, from 6 until 8 p.m. A more complete listing is to be posted online at (www.minotnd.org). Questions for the MRC can be asked at 857-4730.