Blue Earth offers skating, sledding

BLUE EARTH – If area residents are looking for cold-weather fun, the ice rinks and sledding hill are open in Blue Earth, says Jamie Holland, Public Works director.

“It’s good to see the kids getting out instead of being glued to a TV or computer,” added Kathy Bailey, city administrator.

Hours are 1-8 p.m. weekends and non-school days, and 4-8 p.m. school days. The ice rinks are not open when the temperature drops below zero.

“We follow those guidelines very closely, to make sure we are closed at zero or below,” Holland said.

To help parents determine if the rinks and hill are available, the warming house has a new “Open” light in the window visible from Leland Parkway.

Snow, on the other hand, doesn’t stop anyone.

“On snow days, when the kids are out, it looks like an ant hill out there,” Holland said.

The sledding hill has fencing, as well as being shaped and bermed to keep tobagganers from shooting into trees or a lane for vehicles. A trail of tires off to the side helps people get back to the top easier.

One ice rink is boarded for hockey games while the other is open to allow casual and figure skating.

The warming house is manned by three attendants, but Holland and Bailey said they are open to hiring another. Attendants are responsible for unlocking the warming house, checking the rinks, and sweeping and flooding the rinks at night, as well as being an adult presence on site.

Applications are available at City Hall. The position is part-time.

For more information, call the warming house at (507) 526-3803 or City Hall at (507) 526-7336.