Great Skate #46 - Riverdale Park East (renovated)

My youngest niece, who is Almost Eight, joined me for Great Skate #46 at Toronto’s Riverdale Park East in the late afternoon of January 14.

This is the Riverdale rink’s second time on the Great Skate list. In January 2012, was the site of Great Skate #2. Last year, it was renovated by the city and it reopened in December. The dramatic change in its appearance qualifies it to be counted as a new Great Skate.

You reach the rink by a staircase from Broadview Avenue. Previously, the Riverdale Park skating rink was a typical hamster-cage hockey pad. Now the hockey pad has a neighbouring figure-eight skating loop, landscaped with “islands” of evergreens and edged with benches. Heated changerooms are short walk away. The view westward over the Don Valley is still spectacular.

Almost Eight and I arrived just in time to wait for the Zamboni to clean the ice. (That happens to me a lot.) Waiting in the cold is never the best part of skating, but those first glides on the polished ice are worth it.

The small size of the ice trail makes it a good choice for skaters with short or unsteady legs. Almost Eight is a good skater, but we took the opportunity to rest several times between laps. It was fun to watch the other skaters while enjoying the hot chocolate and snacks we brought. 

Almost Eight was intrigued by the young shinny players on the hockey pad. She’d like to learn how to play hockey someday. She also enjoyed exploring the new playground next to the rink before we headed home.

Young skater on Riverdale Park East rink
Almost Eight, looking good on her skates.

Zamboni on Riverdale Park East skating rink
Obligatory Zamboni photo


Popular Great Skates

Great Skate #7 - Ryerson Community Park

Great Skate #21 - Greenwood Park (renovated)

Great Skate #1 - Barbara Ann Scott Rink

Great Skate #30: Arrowhead Provincial Park

Cold winters, now and then