Winter sport : rinks bad and good news with the pandemic

Mathias Mouriaux

Ice-skating is one of the most known and easiest winter sports. Usually, at this time of the year, Michigan has rinks all over the states. 

This year,  because of the pandemic, it is quite different. In fact, with the  covid-19 virus, ice-skating present risks, if an ice-rink is overfilled, the virus can be spread easily. Keeping social distancing while ice-skating can be difficult and even impossible in some cases.

That is why the opening of usual outside rinks at this time of the year has been compromised. 


The 176,000-square-foot sports complex that opened on Davis Highway in Dimondale 22 years ago had to close its doors.


With the situation, practicing indoors activities can present risks. According to the restrictions, some places have to close their doors a few times. That is the case of the Summit Sports and Ice Complex which has had to close its doors for almost a full year. Having no more income and accumulating debt pushed the Summit to close their doors permanently.

“The decision to discontinue operations permanently is the direct result of being shut down by the State of Michigan for much of the last 11 months due to the coronavirus pandemic,” Paige Sauer, its general manager, said in the release. “The inability to have athletes and teams use our facilities for such an extended period of time made it impossible for us to continue financially.” (

The Summit’s staff are thankful for all the time spent at this place and are grateful to all the customers.


Some outdoor places to go ice-skating!


Even if there are fewer outdoor ice rinks than usual, there are some open to the public. The first one is situated at Charlotte on Lansing’s old Washington Park skating rink, approximately 200’ x 80’. 

The rink is designed for rollerblading in the warmer months of the year and it is flooded to provide ice skating in the cold months of the year.  It is open weather dependent.(

Another one is opened at the Gloria Miller Looking Glass Valley Park of Wacousta. And a third one will be open soon at downtown Lansing where an ice rink of the size of 3.300feet is scheduled for before the end of February. 

The skating rink will be located on City Hall Plaza, at the corner of Capitol Avenue and Michigan Avenue, directly across the street from the Michigan Capitol Building. (

Those places are opened to the public as long as the weather allows it. Masks have to be worn and social distancing must be maintained.


Furthermore, people can still create their own ice-skating place on their yard, a pond or else. According to the weather conditions, the actual weather is giving perfect temperature for quick frozen water. Sledding is also a winter sport alternative practicable everywhere and open to everybody as weather permits.