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The Ice at Canalside photos courtesy of Buffalo Waterfront
The Ice at Canalside photos courtesy of Buffalo Waterfront

Ice at Canalside opens Nov. 24


Wed, Nov 1st 2023 11:40 am

Buffalo Waterfront prepares for the ice rink’s 10th winter season

Rich Entertainment Group’s Buffalo Waterfront announced the Ice at Canalside, presented by Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of WNY, will open Friday, Nov. 24. Western New Yorkers are invited to lace up their skates and kick-off the rink’s 10th winter season at the opening weekend celebration.

Opening day will feature a live DJ, carolers and special giveaways, plus a visit by Santa and fireworks to cap off the celebration. The festivities continue throughout the weekend, as Saturday will feature a free hockey shot contest, silent disco, prize wheel and food and beverage specials. The first-ever “Sunday Funday,” a new weekly, family event at the Ice, will include a kids activity zone, ice castle bounce house, coloring on the ice and a visit from ice princesses.

“We are happy to be marking a decade of winter fun at Canalside,” ECHDC President Mark Wendel said. “Everyone looks forward to seeing crowds of friends and families celebrating the season on skates and ice bikes. Whether you’re an expert skater or just learning, we guarantee you will have a memorable experience at Canalside’s one-of-a-kind rink.”

Rink admission and skate rentals can be purchased from inside the Honda Winter Pavilion. Admission will be $8 for ages 13 and up, and $5 for children under 13 and members of the military. Children up to age 5 can skate for free. Patrons may bring their own skates or rent a pair for $5. Season passes are also available, along with discounts for Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield members. This season, the rink will feature a new fleet of inclusive skate walkers for learners of all ages and abilities.

“The Ice at Canalside has become a joyful Western New York winter tradition over the last decade,” said Michael Ball, vice president, community affairs, Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield. “As the official health plan of Canalside, Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield is proud to be part of the ongoing transformation that has seen Buffalo’s beautiful waterfront flourish as a year-round destination of healthy activities, community events and lively entertainment for millions of visitors.”

In addition to ice skating, the Ice at Canalside offers curling, ice bikes and igloo rentals. Curling and the igloos will be available for pre-reservation and walk-up sales as they are available.

The Ice at Canalside photos courtesy of Buffalo Waterfront


“The Ice at Canalside makes a great place for a birthday party or family gathering, or just a fun day downtown,” said Kevin Parkinson, vice president of finance and operations for Rich Entertainment Group. “We encourage Western New Yorkers and visitors to the area to come and take part in this annual tradition at the Buffalo Waterfront.”

During the ongoing construction of Heritage Point adjacent to the canal, Buffalo Waterfront encourages guests to enter the rink through the elevated pedestrian walkway at the Explore & More Children’s Museum entrance off Marine Drive and walk across the bridge over the rink to the pavilion. Visitors may also enter through the walkway along Main Street or by entering from Marine Drive by the lower level of Explore & More.

The rink is accessible from the NFTA Metro Rail’s Erie Canal Harbor Station stop, with Canalside-area parking ramps and surface lots available, as well.

Guests are required to complete a waiver prior to participating in any activity at Canalside. Waivers can be completed on site or online at www.buffalowaterfront.com.

More information about leagues and specialty programing, like Learn To Skate, will be announced in the coming weeks.

For hours of operation, details about special events and the most up to date information on the Roller Rink at Canalside, visit www.buffalowaterfront.com.

The Ice at Canalside will be open through Feb. 25, 2024.

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