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Upwards of 1,500 take in public skating in first month available

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After nearly 1,500 registrations for public skating at Muskoseepi Park since the program began in December, members of city council are asking about the possibility of opening up a third public ice sheet should demand arise.

The pad just outside of the Ernie Radbourne Pavilion, along with the skating oval at the Montrose Cultural Centre have been busy, but Mayor Jackie Clayton says in previous months, they’ve also suggested at least one other location in the city.

“At one point we had planned for another sheet of ice kitty-corner to Harry Balfour, I know initially it was looked at being as a hockey-playing ice,” she says.

However, with hockey not allowed under current provincial COVID-19 restrictions, it made sense at the time to shelve the idea.

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Community Services Director Arlen Miller says the restrictions based programming has done extremely well thus far. He says over a 10-day period, they had over 900 registration requests and over 1,450 official requests.

However, he admits the total number remains a bit of a mystery, but that is due to holiday staffing.

“There was a couple of days it was closed so we didn’t have staff supervising, but it was still open for the public, just not monitored,” he adds.

Until further notice, a maximum of 50 people will be allowed on the Muskoseepi Park pond at one time with bookings only permitted for individuals or groups within the same household.

Free online bookings are available in 1-hour timeslots, with the rink open to skaters from 10:00 a.m. -9:00 p.m.

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