December 4, 2012

Public Ice Skating and Hockey Rick Initiative

Hello VG Residents,

This message is going out to gage how much interest there is in having an ice skating rink at Val Jean Park and potentially Arbre Park. We have two beautiful parks that are otherwise abandoned during the winter months. I already know plenty of kids, as well as adults, in the neighborhood who would love to get outside to skate, learn to skate and/or play hockey.

Unfortunately, the City of Hugo has only one public hockey rink located by Hugo Elementary School and it is maintained by the residents who live near it. After meeting with Scott Anderson, the Hugo Public Works Director, I learned that the City of Hugo does not have any sort of funds for hockey rinks, general skating rinks, warming houses or lights. This is unfortunate for kids who would love to be able to figure skate or play hockey, but may not learn until a later age or just wont have the opportunity to develop like the kids in neighboring cities. For comparison, Shoreview and Arden Hills have skating facilities at Sitzer Park, Wilson Park, Shoreview Commons Park, Cummings Park, Bucher Park, Bobby Theisen Park, McCullough Park, Shamrock Park, Valentine Park, Freeway Park, Hazelnut Park, Perry Park as well as 3 rinks in North Oaks. Each park has a warming house, a general skating rink, a hockey rink and lights.

So far I have pulled together a small group of people in the neighborhood who I knew would be interested in a rink. What we would like to do is find out how many others are interested, who would be willing to assist in planning, and who else would be on board with funding the necessary materials. After speaking with Scott, I have learned that the City of Hugo would store the boards during the summer months and that we would have access to water for flooding the rinks.

I would like to get a larger group of interested residents together to come up with a plan that we can submit to the ARC Review Board. In an ideal world we would have a hockey rink, a general skating rink, lights and a warming house. What we will most likely propose is a temporary (winter months only), slightly smaller hockey rink with short boards and a general skating rink for those who do not wish to play hockey but would like to skate.

If you have any interest in being a part of this initiative, please contact me by December 10th.

Thank you,

Rob Weaver