Calgary has a huge number of outdoor rinks most of which are run by volunteers and all of which are free to use.
Community Outdoor Rinks
There are more than 35 outdoor hockey arenas and many communities also maintain an outdoor rink. Many communities have two rinks, one with boards (to use with stick and pucks) and one without (for pleasure skating). Some are run through the city’s adopt a rink program (pleasure skating only) and others are run by the communities themselves.
Outdoor skating rinks in Calgary are (obviously) weather dependent, but typically open in mid-December and continue through February. Helmets are recommended particularly for kids.
City of Calgary Outdoor Rinks
The city of Calgary also maintains 7 outdoor rinks – 3 regular pleasure skating rinks, 3 pond/lagoon skating rinks and one with a refrigerated ice surface. Hockey sticks are not permitted on the city run outdoor rinks. These rinks are also free of charge. You can check on their website to see if they are currently open or closed.
Regular Outdoor Skating Rinks
- Big Marlborough Park (Large rink by the dry pond) – 6033 Madigan Dr NE
- Prairie Winds Park – (large rink) – 223 Castleridge Blvd. N.E. [closed 2016/17]
- Thompson Family Park – 1236 16 Ave. S.W.
Pond/Lagoon Skating Rinks
- Carburn Park (pond rink) – 67 Riverview Dr. SE )
- Bowness Park (Lagoon rink) – 8900 48 Ave. N.W. – skate rentals, skate sharpening and stabilization bar rentals are available at the Park Side Cafe.
- Prince’s Island Park (Lagoon rink) – 4 St. and 1 Ave. S.W.
Rink with Refrigerated Ice Surface
- Olympic Plaza – 228 8 Ave. S.E. (10 a. – 9 pm) – this is the only refrigerated outdoor ice surface in the city. Due to this, the rink opens earlier than the other rinks (late November) and closes later (mid March). Washrooms are on site and they now have skate rentals too. Hockey sticks, toboggans, sleds & strollers are not permitted on the ice.
What’s your family’s favorite skating rink? Do you know of a rink I’ve missed?