With concerns about Covid-19 on everyone’s mind, Council briefly debated on Monday whether to open the Outdoor Rink in Rotary Park this winter. They were presented with three options ranging from closing it to fully opening including the Transit shelter. Instead they chose the middle option: “authorize municipal staff to open the outdoor rink as soon as weather permits, that signs be posted for social distancing rules and that the transit shelter remain closed for the 2020-2021 season;” With the Transit Shelter closed, there was concern about washroom facilities and places to put on skates. This concern would be resolved with porta-potties and six benches placed around the rink with social distancing. Porta-potties would require electricity to power warming cables to prevent water freezing in the normal handwashing stations. Since this would be expensive, instead hand sanitizers will be provided.
In response to a question, Deputy Director of Community Services Teresa Behan said that the local Health Unit had not been consulted although the Town’s Emergency group had been.
In previous years the rink has proved popular and in summer the area is normally used for a shallow pond with a small central fountain. The original proposal to create this “frink” (fountain, rink) created considerable debate with some suggesting that it should be located in the Trailer Park and others predicting it would not be popular. It was opened 13 December 2008.
It’s particularly popular in December, particularly around Christmas if the ice is good. The photo is from December 2008.
Given that most people in Cobourg observe social distancing, this will be a welcome touch of normalcy.
Link to Information Source
To see the video of this portion of the Committee of the Whole meeting, do one of the following:
- Go here then scroll to item 10.1. Click the heading and the video at top right goes to that part of the meeting OR
- Go to the full video here, Start the video then on the video progress bar, go to time 2:30:55
At the Council Meeting on November 23, as expected, Council approved the Committee of the Whole motion to open the rink as described above. But before they did, Councillor Nicole Beatty asked about the possibility of a second location for a public skating surface – perhaps in the Trailer Park. Deputy Director of Community Services Teresa Behan said she would investigate and see what would be required. Councillor Brian Darling said that previous experience (perhaps 20 years ago) was that it had not been successful. It was hard to keep water in place, trees littered the surface and sun melted the ice.