I love the white stuff, so for me the unofficial end of winter (the day the last outdoor rink closes) is the saddest day of the year.
Most city rinks are closed. But a few struggle valiantly on. Westcliffe is open for business for one last day.
Lakeview was a very busy place yesterday, with a lot of the players coming from all over the city to Al’s famous rink for one last kick at the can. Today’s visitors won’t be disappointed – Al flooded last night.
By praising Al I’m NOT criticizing other rink operators – I used to be one myself so I KNOW how tough the job is. Every rink is different, with its own unique constraints.
Al would be the FIRST to say “Heck, I’m just lucky that I have such support in the community; I love the rink and I don’t want thanks.”
the TRUTH about Al’s curling rink
I still want to salute the self-effacing Lakeview operator as a way of praising the Ottawa Model for delivering outdoor rinks. It’s very different from the Toronto, Montreal and Gatineau models.
When everything falls into place perfectly, as it does at Al’s rink, the Ottawa Model (a neighbourhood/City partnership) delivers the most bang for the buck. Our low-tech, low-budget approach gives us the greatest number of neighbourhood rinks, meaning that as many kids as possible can walk to the local rink.