by Chris Hale
7 Oct 2006

   It’s that time of year, once again, when the undiscovered champions on ice get out their skates to show the many spectators their latest version of a figure eight. There’s plenty of places that one can go to be “discovered” on ice, or for the rest of you, have a nice time skating while viewing the many skylines of the great old City. Here’s my top three choices for skating locations for you to check out this winter:

1– The Rink at Rockefeller Center - perhaps the greatest location of them all, the rink is surrounded by the great Christmas tree, the golden statue of Prometheus, and the familiar art deco skyscrapers. I always bring my own skates but you can rent them if you suddenly get the urge to twirl. They have sizes from baby 6 up to men’s 14. The cost of renting skates is under $10.00. The skaters line up and wait there turn at this first come, first serve rink. During the busy holiday season, you get about 90 minutes on the ice for under twenty dollars (adults). This rink is considered the most pricey. If you would like to improve your skating skills, private lessons can be arranged for thirty something dollars for 30 minute lessons. For skating lessons call 212–332–7655 The Rockefeller Center rink is located at 49th and 50th street.

2– The Wollman Rink in Central Park – now this is for the skaters that want to skate for a long uninterrupted time. It costs only $11 for the peak holiday weekends and only $8.50 during the week, but this is for access for the whole day! Renting skates is under $ 5.00 but again I would bring my own. This rink is heaven if you go on a weekday. The City skyline during the evening hours is worth the trip. Skating lessons are available. They also have lockers for your stuff but I would recommend bringing your own lock since they charge for theirs and it’s not as safe as your own. Located at 59th street and 6th avenue.

3– The Pond in Bryant Park – this is the free choice where access to skate costs you nothing! Rentals of skates would still run about $ 10.00. This skating location is quite pretty during the annual holiday event Fetes de Noel where vending booths are set up around the pond for holiday shopping. This rink stays open until midnight on both Fridays and Saturdays for all you serious skaters. The Pond in Bryant Park also has a lot of free events and performances that you can check out. This large rink is located behind the New York Public Library. This rink is open daily from the last week in October thru mid January and is located between 40th and 42nd street.