The weather has been cold enough for ice to form in the past week, so you can get out the skates for the season. Slice of Ice on Water Street has been open since mid December. With the best groomed ice and convenience for toilets, hot chocolate and snacks, this is often my first choice. If you have your own skates, it's free to use the ice. If you need skates, you can rent them there. This is a popular place for lunch time skaters, so during February, you can only rent skates during the lunch hour (11-2) and on weekends. Skates are $8 for adults and $7 for kids. Skate sharpening is $6.
Here is the county park link for all the outdoor ice spaces. For specific information on each park, there is a link on that page to the friends group that manages volunteers for the rinks.
The Friends of Center Street Park have a bigger and better rink this year at Center Street Park funded in part by Waterstone Bank. This rink is free. Skates will be provided by the Pettit Center at NO COST on weekends from 12-6. They are always looking for volunteers to help with ice maintenance.
LaFollette Park in West Allis just reopened their land rink for the fourth year. The building will be open on weekends and evenings (4-10), provided there is someone there to supervise. The rink is lit at night. You need your own skates here. There is no rental facility. This is another fine example of how a friends group has been able to provide recreation in conjunction with the Milwaukee Parks Department.
Klode Park in Whitefish Bay has a rink with warming house and toilets. Bring your own skates.
My favorite outdoor space is at Washington Park Urban Ecology Center. There you can borrow ice skates and walk just outside the door to the ice. You may have to help with shoveling if there's been a recent snowfall. If you tire of skating, they also have sleds, snowshoes, and skis available to members. This is a bargain for anyone not wanting to purchase and store lots of cold weather gear. Annual membership begins at just $30! This weekend is their Winterfest where you can try a variety of winter fun activities.
The Hales Corner Ice Rink will not be open at all this year due to construction delays.
|The Washington Park Urban Ecology Center has chairs and skate rental for first time skaters|
If you prefer indoor ice, you can always check out Wilson Ice Arena. A calendar of open skating times is available, but it seems they have not updated the year. The information is good though. You can rent skates ($3) and skate for a fee of $3.50-6 depending on age. The Glow Skate sessions are lots of fun. Follow the County Parks weekly update for more information on when those will occur in 2016.