NIBCO Skate Park Opens This Saturday

NIBCO Skate Park Opens This Saturday

Nakori Cachiguango, Staff Writer

The chilly climate change in Elkhart is only beginning to settle in. Going out with friends and family sure beats staying at home with nothing to do. Elkhart is lucky enough to have its own local ice skating park that fortunately opens this time of year.

NIBCO Water and Ice Park, near downtown Elkhart, will finally open its doors again at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 4. Special admission for opening day is posted, as kids 12 and under are free of pay, and ages 13 and up are $5 per person. Not only that, but because it is the first day of a fully opened ice park, skate rental is free! 

Elkhart parks are not known for a small opening day. Special events will be happening throughout the hours the day the ice skating rink is first opened. At 6 p.m., the Winterfest Parade will be in motion on Main Street in downtown Elkhart. Moving forward, at 7:30 p.m., the Irish Figure Skating Club Exhibition will take place at the park. The time after the events to the time where the park closes, at 10 p.m. (weather permitting), there will be a Memorial Skate in honor of Ralph Hartnagle, who was a longtime volunteer at the ice park.

The Ice Park shares lifelong memories with students from Elkhart High School and has brought friendships together throughout lives of students going there since their elementary years. “I’ve been going there for about four years, since the seventh grade” sophomore Logan Hetchler states. “My friends and I always went on weekends from the day those doors opened to the day they closed.” Continuing, he adds, “The best memory that was made there was when we all started a conga line and skated off the ice band into a large pile of snow.” Despite all the good feedback the park receives, there are still some people who just haven’t visited and gotten the whole skating experience. “I would consider going,” share sophomore Nissy Alvarez-Chavez, “because it gives lots of opportunities to have fun with friends and family outside of school and home.” 

NIBCO Water and Ice Park not only brings out the fun and cool new things to do during the winter time, but it also brings out job opportunities. A handful of students from Elkhart High School have taken up the offer to have a job at the park and gain work experience. “This year will be my first year working at the park,”Hetchler continues. “ I feel like it’ll be different from other jobs because of how it is a seasonal job and the fact that most of my friends will be there a lot,” despite the park opening only during the winter season.

So, take a drive through downtown Elkhart and make sure not to miss the local Water and Ice Park on the way. Stop by and create new memories with friends and family. It’s another fun way to enjoy this cold winter season.