Outdoor ice skating rink in downtown

November 26, 2008 7:02:02 PM PST
There's no need to go all the way to Rockefeller Center in New York when we have The Ice at Discovery Green right in downtown Houston. It's just one of several new attractions in downtown Houston this holiday season.[SIGN UP: Get headlines and breaking news sent to you]

It's a scramble to the finish line for the city's newest ice skating rink. The unusual 'rink in a lake' plan has been in the works for more than two years. A portion of the park's summertime lake is drained to make room for the ice rink. The rink is cooled from machines underground.

"Creating the space for the ice rink was a little nerve-wracking," admitted Discovery Green Conservancy President Guy Hagstatte. "We have the technology included in the lake to be able to drain the model boat basin, and we tested it a couple of times."

The Ice at Discovery Green will just be one of several new attractions in downtown Houston this holiday season. The Pavilions Shopping Center along Main Street is new as well. To link it all together is a new trolley that will take families from one end of downtown to another.

"There are two trolleys that will be running Friday nights, and then all day Saturday and Sunday, starting the weekend after Thanksgiving and every weekend through December," explained Angie Bertinot of the Downtown District. "It connects all the major holiday destinations together."

The Downtown District says it wants to make the area attractive and affordable for families. Many activities are free, and a turn on the ice rink is just $10, including skate rentals. So even if no snow flurries will fall, you can still feel the spirit of the season.

Park visitor Robert Grecia said, "I think if you have the ice rink, you can do some winter activities. It gives the whole seasonal feel."

It's definitely feeling like the holiday season. The rink opens to the public on Thanksgiving Day. Get detailed information and rink hours here.

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