By Meredith Lyons
Ice skating is not only a great way to exercise, it’s a fun activity. Whether it’s your first time on the ice or you’re a seasoned skater, an ice rink is a great place for an outing with friends, a first date or a family event.
McCormick Tribune Ice Rink
Michigan Ave. and Washington St.
Chicago, IL 60602
Located in Millennium Park, the McCormick Tribune Ice Rink is one of the most popular rinks in Chicago. The rink itself is free and open to the public and skate rental is offered for only $10. Night skating can be especially breathtaking surrounded by the skyscrapers that shape Chicago’s skyline. The rink opens on November 16, 2012 and closes on March 10, 2013. For a list of hours, including holiday hours, click here.
Johnny’s Ice House East
1350 W. Madison St.
Chicago, IL 60607
If you’re interested in learning to figure skate or joining a hockey league, Johnny’s IceHouse East may be the way to go. Figure Skate Chicago teaches lessons at Johnny’s. This location does not rent skates or give open ice time to anyone who’s interested in just skating around. The Chicago Blackhawks also practice at Johnny’s and their practices are free and open to the public for viewing. Johnny’s has a small bar with a view of the ice and there is paid parking available (watch for the signs, parking availability changes on some days), although the garage is not available during Blackhawks practice days. Johnny’s also has a ‘West’ location at 2550 West Madison Street.
Related: Best Winter Date Ideas
McFetridge Sports Center
3843 N. California Ave.
Chicago, IL 60618
If you’re looking to skate indoors or perhaps during warmer months, McFetridge keeps the ice rink open every month aside from August. There is a $5 entry fee and skate rental is $3. Ice skating lessons are offered as well as pick-up hockey games. There are various open skate times, but be sure to check the schedule here before you go. McFetridge also hosts both adult and youth hockey leagues. There is also free parking available.
Daley Bicentennial Park
337 E. Randolph St.
Chicago, IL 60601
For those who want to get in some ice time without battling the crowds, the Daley Bicentennial Rink is generally less crowded than Millennium Park. Skate free if you have your own skates and rentals only cost $7. The view of the skyline and the park is still impressive and locker rentals are available for $1. There is seating available around the rink for those who just want to watch or merely take a break.
The Rink at Wrigley
Clark St. and Addison St.
Chicago, IL 60657
The big draw of the Rink at Wrigley is location, location, location. The rink itself is rather small and a bit pricier than most public skating rinks around the city. However, a rink right next to Wrigley Field is novel and the rink is only there for a limited time. On off days (Monday and Tuesday), the rink is cheaper with $5 entry and $5 skate rentals. All other days are double the price.
Meredith Lyons is an actor, competitive fighter and fitness instructor in Chicago who also owns an amazing cat named Jake. Meredith has been writing on Examiner as the Chicago Martial Arts Examiner since 2008. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.