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Outdoor skating oval being built downtown

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Grande Prairie residents and visitors will soon have another place for some winter fun. A temporary outdoor skating rink is being set up downtown.

Spearheaded by the Grande Prairie Downtown Association, the oval is currently being flooded and readied for use. It has taken over the field next to the Montrose Cultural Centre.

“It was cleared [Monday],” says Community Services Director Arlen Miller. “It was flooded… for the first flood; we made arrangements for a fire pit, and we will supply some firewood.”

“They had a bigger event planned for next year, there will be more information on that,” Miller adds. “For this year it’s going to be fairly basic.”

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Miller says the firepit will be fully supervised, but rink users are encouraged to bring fireside snacks to make it a fun evening out. He adds that benches will also be supplied by the Grande Prairie Parks Department, but the use of lights to create a night time rink is still up for debate.

“We are contemplating doing some lights, but that may take us a little bit longer, maybe that’s a next year project.”

Miller says those who care to come down and use the rink must be very mindful of safety, and not to overdo do it while on skates.

“It’s not for speed skating and it’s not for hockey playing; we’ve got other facilities in the city where you can do those activities,” he says.

Miller expects the rink to be open until the weather begins to warm up in the spring.

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