Lewiston rink not going up this year | Local News

Lewiston’s annual rink will not open this winter, with the city’s recreation department looking to purchase a replacement.

City officials said the rink was past its life expectancy, having been in use since 2011. It was meant to be stationary, not being set up and taken down year after year. The town’s director of recreation, Cathy Cvijetinovic, said the coils used to cool the ice crack when wound up and the collectors and ice runners need to be replaced.

“We need to think about our Lewiston residents. We want to put together a good program,” Cvijetinovic said. “Having to cancel all the time because the rink isn’t working would have been too much trouble this year.”

The rink is usually set up in Academy Park in the village, but it never got village approval to go ahead due to other construction work. Normally, the skating season lasts from late November to early January.

The recreation department would also need $50,000 to replace between 420 and 450 pairs of ice skates, those used being more than 10 years old and having never been sharpened. Grants would be sought to pay for the rink and cover equipment costs

Instead of having an ice rink this year, Cvijentinovic is meeting with Niagara University officials to arrange dates at Dwyer Arena for Lewiston residents to come and skate there, as well as at the Hyde Park ice rink. . She said it would be temporary as the city plans to purchase a new rink for next year and move it to a new location for year-round use.

“We want to find a permanent location for it,” Cvijentinovic said, “so that we can then keep it there and maybe use it during the summer as a type of sports ground.”

City council member William Geiben said he wants the recreation department to have a new location and equipment ready by March 2023, so the city can seek grants and be ready for winter that year. City supervisor Steve Broderick said the rink was unsafe, with boards in poor condition, a few managed quick fixes with a conduit safe and some kids cutting their hands on it.

In 2019, there was talk in the village of moving the rink from Academy Park, with officials citing the damage the rink is causing to the park. Eventually, the skating rink opened in the park that year.

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