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The Ice at Canalside has special holiday hours throughout winter recess

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Mon, Dec 28th 2015 10:45 am

New amenities for 2015-16 mean more things to do at The Ice while the kids break from school

The Ice at Canalside presented by BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York has open ice-skating planned every day (weather dependent) of winter recess, including New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. Ice bike rentals and curling will also be available most days.

More than 15,000 people have already skated on The Ice at Canalside this season, kicking off what is expected to be an exciting winter on Buffalo's popular waterfront destination.

The Ice at Canalside open skate holiday hours are in effect today through Sunday, Jan. 3. Holiday hours Monday through Wednesday are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Thursday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.; and Sunday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. If the rink needs to be closed due to Mother Nature, updates will be posted to both Canalside Buffalo's Facebook and Twitter accounts and the online calendar at CanalsideBuffalo.com.

New amenities this year include the new 30-feet-by-50-feet Canalside Winter Pavilion presented by Cricket Wireless. The pavilion is heated and has food and merchandise vendors, including Just Fries (topped and loaded fries), Harborside Mercantile (waffles, popcorn, pizza, coffee), Bubbles & Brews Beverages (beer, wine and Pepsi products), as well as Buffalove and Canalside merchandise. Additional heated restrooms are located behind the pavilion. Kiosks are outside the tent house Ice Bikes of Buffalo and Friends of the Buffalo Story.

The site is also host to a new 16-feet-by-80-feet structured warming tent that is about twice as big as the vinyl tent used last season and ready for any weather. The tent has a full glass wall along the ice side for great views of The Ice, as well as benches, cubbies and rental lockers.

The Ice's improved visitor experience includes extended matted areas, which allows visitors to enjoy more activities without having to remove their skates, and 20 new skate aide walkers. The ticket sales booth has also been relocated to help decongest the entrance area and manage lines. Bryce's Winter Café (kiosk at ice entrance) will serve coffee, hot chocolate, pretzels and roasted nuts daily.

Season pass holders will have access to Canalside Pass Perks, including deals at various Canalside district businesses. (For example, 10 percent off purchases at Fowler's Chocolates and Clayton's Toys at the HARBORCENTER Shops.) For more information, visit www.canalsidebuffalo.com/seasonpass/.

Additional information on the schedule of events, parking, rates and updates can be found at www.canalsidebuffalo.com. Visitors can take the NFTA Metro Rail to the Erie Canal Harbor Station stop. Parking is available in adjacent parking ramps and lots.

Canalside is a growing regional destination and entertainment district, situated on 21 historic acres along downtown Buffalo's emerging waterfront on the Buffalo River. Canalside earns its name from its storied past, when the Erie Canal Harbor was built in 1825 as the western terminus of the Erie Canal. Until five years ago, the land was barren and inaccessible, but the area has been reclaimed by the state's Erie Canal Harbor Development Corp., and developed with millions of dollars in public and private investment.

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