(Buffalo, N.Y.) — Ice skating has returned to Canalside for the winter season, with a greater emphasis on comfort and safety.
The rink is open to skaters of all age and skill levels and this year there are a few additions to the rink intended to better accommodate guests and provide a safer experience.
For example, there is now a welcome tent on the corner of Main Street and Marine Drive that provides visitors with a warm place to rent equipment and change into their skates.
There is also a new locker room where people can secure their belongings and a warming lounge, next to the rink, where skaters can take a break and warm up with a cup of hot chocolate and other refreshments.
While skaters are required to sign a waiver before they hit the ice, Canalside has taken precautions to keep guests safe.
For example, mats are located on the rink that act as a buffer between the skater and the ice.
“The rubber mats allow the skaters to easily and safely move around with their ice skates on,” said Erin Marra, Canalside marketing manager.
Ice guards, who skate along the edges of the rink, also work to ensure safety and assist with falls or injuries.
“If someone is noticeably injured we head on over,” said Ryan Hennigan, a Canalside ice guard.
“The first thing we do is make sure that they are okay. We try to keep them down so they don’t hop up and do anything crazy and then we immediately call a manager on duty who comes over with assistance and they can fill out an incident report and get the individual the help that they need.”