October 1st, 2020

City rinks opening in staggered fashion, while others sit waiting

By Medicine Hat News on September 16, 2020.

Players scramble for the puck at the Kinplex arena in this December 2019 file photo. As winter ice sports begin to ramp up, the city is opening more rinks to accommodate.--NEWS FILE PHOTO

More arenas in Medicine Hat are set to open this month, but the Moose Recreation Centre on the Southeast Hill will only be opened “if demand warrants.”

At the same time, offerings are again expanding at the Family Leisure Centre, the city’s parks and recreation department announced Tuesday.

This fall the opening of the Crestwood Recreation Centre and pool was pushed off until at least 2021 as administrators said the costs of implementing COVID-related health protocols was too great considering current usage at other indoor gyms and facilities.

Officials stated in a release this week that with hockey and winter ice sport seasons starting they are altering entrances and exits from arenas to improve flow and avoid groups from congesting hallways.

One sheet of ice at the Kinplex opened for user groups, like ringette, hockey and figure skaters, on Monday.

The Hockey Hounds Arena in Crescent Heights is set to open on Sept. 28, with Kin 2 to follow in mid-October.

The Cenovus Arena at the FLC and the Canalta Centre are open, the release states. Shinny hockey for seniors and those aged 55-plus has resumed.

At the FLC, the aquatic facility’s steam room, hot tub and tot pool could reopen to the general public this week with distancing protocols in place. More swimming lesson sessions have been added.

Pre-registration is still required.

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