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Outdoor Places to Ice Skate

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At one time, all ice skating took place outside. Today, most people skate at indoor ice rinks, but there are still some wonderful outdoor ice rinks. This is a list of some of the top outdoor places to ice skate.

1. Outdoor Ice Skating in New York City

Outdoor Ice Skating at Rockefeller Center
Photo by Chris Hondros - Getty Images
Over a quarter million people skate at Rockefeller Center's ice rink each year. It is considered part of the "New York City experience." The rink is open from October through April. There are other outdoor ice skating options in New York City. Those options include Wollman Rink in Central Park and Lasker Rink in Central Park. Another great option is ice skating on The Pond in Bryant Park. Admission is free for those who have their own skates.

2. Outdoor Ice Skating in Vail, Colorado

Ice Skating Outdoors in Vail, Colorado
JO ANN Schneider Farris Personal Photos
At the top of the Lions Head Gondola in Vail, Colorado, is an outdoor ice rink. Skate rental is available. The gondola ride up is free after 2:00 PM. Free public skating is also available on the outdoor skating rink at The Vail Nordic Center and at Eagle-Vail Pavilion.

3. Put an Ice Rink in Your Own Backyard

It is possible to build your own personal ice rink in your backyard with a "NiceRink" or an Ice 'n Go Backyard Ice Skating Rink. Kits are available in various sizes. With an ice rink in a backyard, skaters can skate outside anytime. These personal ice rinks are ready to skate on after several days of freezing temperatures.

4. Ice Skate Outdoors in Washington, DC

Ice skaters can view sculpture while skating outdoors at the Sculpture Garden Ice Rink. Music is played in the background. This outdoor ice rink is located across from the National Gallery of Art. Another outdoor ice rink in Washington, DC is the Pershing Park Ice Rink which is located just two blocks from the White House. The rink is family-oriented and nice for young children. The rink is lighted for nightime skating.

5. Kristi Yamaguchi Holiday Ice Rink at Embarcadero Center in San Francisco

Embarcadero Center Holiday Ice Rink is a San Francisco holiday tradition. Shoppers can skate, shop, and eat. The rink is very crowded, but this rink does put skaters in the mood for the winter holidays. The rink is open for seven weeks in November and December of each year. The rink is located at Justin Herman Plaza, adjacent to Four Embarcadero Center and across from the historic Ferry Building.

6. The Winter Lodge in Palo Alto, California

Winter Lodge is a permanent outdoor ice rink. The rink offers public skating sessions and private party rentals. Skaters can warm up next to fireplaces that are set up inside and outside. Hot chocolate is available. Ice skating lessons are also offered.

7. New Mexico's Outdoor Ice Skating Rinks

There are several places to ice skate outdoors in New Mexico. In the north-central region, there is Eagle Rock Lake. Montezuma Ice Pond is operated by the city in the northeast region. Bluewater Lake State Park is in the northwest region. Cloudcroft Outdoor Ice Rink is in southeast. At that rink, skaters can rent skates for an entire day.

8. Outdoor Ice Skating in London

London has outdoor ice skating in several locations. There are several places to ice skate at night. Some London locations with rinks include Somerset House, the Tower of London, Alexandra Palace and the Natural History Museum.

9. Artificial Outdoor Ice Rinks in Toronto, Canada

Everyone can skate in Toronto. There are forty-nine outdoor artificial ice rinks in the city.

10. Ice Skating in Minnesota, Michigan, Montana, Illinois, and North Dakota

In the cold winter months, all over Minnesota, Michigan, Montana, Illinois, and North Dakota there are outdoor ice skating rinks. Each winter, all over those states, rinks are frozen over in many neighborhood parks.

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