Wednesday, October 2, 2013 , Updated 9:03 a.m., November 21, 2013
Temporary, outdoor ice skating rink in Fort Worth opens Friday
It'll be like having a mini Rockefeller Center in Fort Worth.
FORT WORTH A temporary ice skating rink will pop up near the Trinity River in the Fort Worth, next to Coyote Drive-In. The board of the Trinity River Vision Authority approved the plans in early October.
Panther Island Ice will be located under a pavilion currently used by Coyote Drive-In, and the ice will be kept at a cool zero degrees Fahrenheit, said Matt Oliver, public information officer for the Trinity River Vision Authority. A north-of-Houston company called Ice Rink Events was contracted to do the work; they operate seasonal rinks at the Discovery Green in Houston, on the rooftop of the Whole Foods in Austin, and in cities like Manhattan, San Diego and Seattle.
Ice Rink Events president Mike Clayton said the new ice rink in Fort Worth will be "our own little Rockefeller Center in downtown Fort Worth."
The land underneath the rink and the neighboring Coyote Drive-In is owned by the Trinity River Vision Authority, and Oliver said the skate rink, like the movie theater, is a way to bring people to the neighborhood. The ice rink wasn't part of the Trinity River Vision Authority's original plan (which includes 88 miles along the Trinity River), but Oliver said it cropped up as a temporary way to entertain.
"We've had concerts and events and festivals down there, and it's brought people out like crazy," he said. "[The ice rink has the potential to] bring people from Dallas, from areas who might not know about the project."
The ice rink will share concessions with Coyote's canteen, and patrons of the rink can use Coyote's restrooms. Skaters will not be required to buy a movie ticket to use the rink.
Panther Island Ice will be open every day from November 22 to January 5, including on holidays. Admission costs $10, or $8 for students, military and groups of 15 or more. Parking will be free.