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Frosty festivities and activities abound this winter at Devon Ice Rink

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The newest thing at Devon Ice Rink isn’t one skaters will likely see.

“We improved a lot of the equipment,” said Leslie Spears, Myriad Botanical Gardens communications and marketing director.

New coils help the rink stay frozen longer, she said. It’s not the flashiest change, but it’s one that guarantees a lot more fun for visitors.

The rink recently opened for its seventh winter season at 113 S. Robinson Ave., but Spears said lessons of the last past still can’t overcome the laws of nature.

“If it gets to 60 degrees and there’s melting, we have to shut it down,” she said.

But when weather cooperates, it’s a joy to behold. Ice-skating isn’t a familiar sport to many Oklahomans, but city residents quickly took to it.

“So many people are learning to ice-skate on this rink,” Spears said. “It’s fun to see adults out there. It’s becoming a family tradition for a lot of people.”

Rock on

Spears said even those who don’t skate will still find a lot to do. This year, the staff introduced curling classes taught by Oklahoma Curling Club members.

Curling is like a cross between shuffleboard and bowling, but on ice. Teams throw large, polished granite stones and use brooms to sweep the ice and direct the stones to a target called the house. The team that gets the stone closest to the target earns a point.

Spears said the classes are a hit. The next class is Dec. 10, and it’s sold out. Those who still want to try curling can visit Oklahoma Curling Club at okcurling.com.

A different kind of rock takes charge on Friday nights. Chameleon Entertainment DJ Brian Smith drives Rock ’n’ Skate nights 6-9 p.m. Fridays and plays a variety of genres to keep people moving.

Spears said Rock ’n’ Skate nights are popular with teens and parents thanks to Smith. His mix of pop, country and disco appeals to multiple age groups and energizes skaters to get out on the ice.

Entry with skate rental is $7-$12. Guests who bring their own skates pay $8 admission.

Rink hours are 3-9 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays, 3-11 p.m. Fridays, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Saturdays and 11 a.m.- 7 p.m. Sundays. It is open 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Christmas Day and 11 a.m.-1 a.m. New Year’s Eve.

Icing encouraged

On the ice, it’s considered rude to skid to a stop and cover other skaters with frost, but another kind of icing happens at the rink during Cookies with Santa 6-7:30 p.m. Dec. 15 at Park House Events Center, 125 Ron Norick Blvd.

Kids and adults can decorate and eat cookies, visit with Old Saint Nick and create holiday art before taking to the ice. Tickets are $6-$15. All tickets include skate rental and entry to Devon Ice Rink after the event. Registration is required by noon Dec. 14.

Spears said she tries to walk around Myriad Botanical Gardens at least once a day and it’s inspiring to see how the area has become a hub of activity for every season.

“Cold weather doesn’t stop families from getting out and having fun,” she said.

Since Spears can’t spend all day at the rink, she follows social media to stay informed about what’s going on and to keep visitors informed about schedule changes.

“I see the photos they post, and it’s such a good variety of people,” she said. “There are proposals that happen here. Lots of people go on first dates here. A lot of families come out on Sundays. It’s such a fun day.”

The fun will go longer during winter break, Spears said, when the rink opens 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Mondays-Saturdays and 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Sundays Dec. 14-Jan 2.

Print headline: Think rink, From skating and curling to meetings with Santa, Devon Ice Rink is a hub of winter activity.

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