Rink Wrap-Up

The first season for Trailwest’s Kristina Kiss Park ice rink was a huge success. Although we didn’t officially track usage, it was widely noted that, on days where the weather permitted (and there were a lot of them!) there were generally people on the ice from morning to night.

Without question, the highlight of the season was the first annual Trailwest SkateFest on January 18 – both turnout and weather were terrific. Sponsored by CIBC, it was a great opportunity to come out and enjoy some coffee, hot chocolate, and donuts, as well as meet our neighbours. We’re already looking forward to next year.

As you may know, the Trailwest Community Association has agreed to take on the responsibility for control and maintenance of the rink, on behalf of the City of Ottawa. In return, the City provides us with $2,000 to defray our own costs. Our aim is to put this money to use in events benefitting the entire community throughout the year.

As with all community associations who have taken on this responsibility, we are reliant on our fellow community members to help out with the rink maintenance. While we had a number of people who came out on several occasions, three people in particular deserve special recognition. Dale Austin and Dan Kyle were often on the scene to help out (sometimes with a snowblower!), and their help is greatly appreciated. Of course, the man who spent more time on the ice than anybody else (often all alone) was Tony Garabatos. This season wouldn’t have been nearly the success it was without Tony’s efforts, so the Board wishes to express our gratitude.

While we had a lot of help from a few people this season, we’re hoping to spread it out more evenly next year. With more people helping, it will easier for all. Also, instead of continuing to rely largely on a call/e-mail list, we’re hoping to follow the lead of other Ottawa community associations and establish a weekly schedule, with volunteers committing to a night a week. Those interested are invited to contact our Director of Member Relations, Allison Daines Allen, at allison@mytrailwest.ca. If a fraction of those who use the rink pitch in to help, we’ll be all set!

Finally, a couple of friendly reminders/requests. First, please keep in mind that, when the lights go out at 11 pm, the entire park is closed, and nobody is permitted to remain on the ice. Second, we ask all users to use the garbage bin provided, and place all trash in it when you leave. We’ve got a great park – let’s keep it clean for everybody to use!

Thanks again for a great season!

Your Trailwest Community Association