Now you can skate, as well as eat and shop, on 17th Avenue S.W.

An inner city community celebrated the holidays by opening a new skating rink in Tomkins Park Nov. 30, 2013.

The 17th Avenue S.W. community held an opening party for the new rink and the event attracted booths from nearby businesses and even a few hardy souls who came out for a skate.

“I love it,” says Sasha Massey, who was strolling through 17th Avenue with Owen Montpellier, and passed by the party at the new rink.

“I think it’s very festive and it’s very beautiful,” she says.

“The park needed something. I felt that it needed a little sprucing up, so it’s a nice addition to 17th Avenue. Now you can come for dinner and go skating, and I think it’s a great idea.”

Montpellier also comments liked the party and new rink.

“I’ve only been in Calgary for about three months, and I like 17th Avenue,” Montpellier says.

“We come here quite often and it’s great. I used to play hockey, so I do enjoy skating, and it’s a nice and romantic element.”

He expects to see more of the rink in the future, however, and hopes in future, it will be “a little bit bigger”, actually.

“It’s a little small, but I guess it depends on how many people are going to be using it.

“I’d also like to see a real rink, because it’s just plastic. Maybe if they get real ice, it’ll be a good change or addition.”

The opening party started in the late morning at 11 a.m. and finished at 3 p.m.

Families with their children, couples and individuals alike attended the opening, along with local businesses such as Ox & Angela, the sponsor of the event, and a music performance by Local 510.

Booths from other businesses such as the yogurt retailer Tutti Frutti, were also open for its grand opening and were accepting donations for the Canadian Red Cross.

Kimberly Shen from the party’s Tutti Frutti booth commented that, “”17th Avenue, for a long time, has been the place where modern restaurants have been located.”

New Rink: Kimberly Shen is one of the Tutti Frutti staff for a booth that was up during the 17th Avenue opening party.  (Photo by Leo Aragon/The Press)
New Rink: Kimberly Shen is one of the Tutti Frutti staff who manned a booth during the 17th Avenue S.W. rink-opening party. (Photo by Leo Aragon/The Press)

Leanne Wong, the booth representative for Clive Burger thought the new rink’s visitors would add a new element to the traditional 17th Avenue visitor mix.

“With the skating rink, I hope to see a lot of families come down and increase walking traffic.

“17th Ave. always has a lot of things coming up, so it’s great to see new faces, and I love to see families outdoors.”

About Leo Aragon 10 Articles
As a writing and communications major in the journalism program at SAIT, Leo Aragon worked as a reporter for The Press during the 2013-2014 academic year.