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ECHDC: Ice at Canalside open for season

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Sat, Dec 2nd 2017 09:50 am
Building on success of last winter, more activities and amenities added; visit www.canalsidebuffalo.com for complete schedule of events
Erie Canal Harbor Development Corp. (ECHDC) on Friday officially opened The Ice at Canalside presented by BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York for another winter season.
This year, skaters can also get an up-close look at the exciting construction of the Explore & More Children's Museum that is underway. The Ice, created under the leadership of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, provides visitors with a skating surface that is bigger than two NHL rinks, with three unique bridges, and more than 20,000 square feet of pedestrian towpaths. This season visitors once again will be able to enjoy curling, ice bikes and other winter activities.
"Skating under the stars surrounded by the lights of the city is a magical way to spend a winter evening," ECHDC Chairman Robert Gioia said. "The Winter Lodge, warming tent, and food and beverage choices make it a fun experience for skaters and others who just want to enjoy watching all of the activity. We are expecting an exceptional season."
This year, Be Our Guest Ltd has made changes that visitors to The Ice at Canalside will notice immediately, including the construction of a brand-new 100-by-40-foot entrance pavilion. The pavilion will be the main entrance point to the Ice at Canalside and will provide a warm covered area that will speed up the process of admission, renting skates, safety waivers and storing personal belongings.
The Ice at Canalside will also feature a new ice layout with curling, presented by Chiampou Travis Besaw and Kershner LLP, in a new location that will now allow for food and beverage access near the curling lanes. The public skating surface presented by BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York is also reconfigured to allow skaters to skate alongside the Explore & More construction site.
The Winter Lodge will once again serve as the main food and beverage area, featuring a new menu focusing on hot winter treats, including homemade soup and chili, personal pan pizzas, coffee and hot chocolate. There will also be an outdoor bar next to the Winter Lodge where visitors will be able to enjoy their beverages while overlooking the ice.
"The customer experience at the Ice at Canalside is our focal point for the 2017-18 winter season. The new amenities, including a large heated entrance pavilion and the enhancement of Canalside favorites, will allow for an easier, warmer and more enjoyable experience," said Jon Dandes, president of Canalside Management Group. "We realized the success of the Ice at Canalside needed to continue and the new ice layout will provide a new experience for everyone who has visited in past years."
More information on the schedule of events, parking and updates can be found at http://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.
Hours of Operation:
  • 3-7 p.m. Wednesday/Thursday
  • 1-10 p.m. Friday
  • 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday
  • 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday
Note: hours may change during school breaks and on holidays, as well as during inclement weather. Visit Canalside's website or Facebook and Twitter accounts for the most up-to-date hours.
Rates:
  • Ice admission, adult (13-plus) - $6
  • Ice admission, child (6-12) - $4
  • BCBS ice admission - $5
  • Skate rental - $4
  • BCBS skate rental - $3
  • Season pass, single - $36*
  • Season pass, family of 4 - $99*
  • Curling - $10 per person weekdays, $15 per person weekends and holidays
Interested curling parties can reserve sheet time at http://www.canalsidebuffalo.com.

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