Warm winter weather causes customer surge at indoor ice rinks

Warm winter weather causes customer surge at indoor ice rinks

It’s rare in Wisconsin, especially during winter, for the temperature inside to be colder than it is outside.

This year, however, unseasonably warm weather has many in the area lamenting the lack of snow and ice, while businesses that provide even a small taste of winter are booming. 

The Madison Ice Arena is having its biggest season ever, with two to three times the number of customers as in past years. Madison Ice Events Coordinator Sara Withrow attributes much of this surge in customers to the warmer December temperatures that are preventing the outdoor rinks from freezing.

“Most people didn’t understand how much having the free outdoor rinks impacts us here at the indoor rinks,” Withrow said. “It’s been very busy this year … we’re happy, excited and scared all at the same time.”

Skaters, for the most part, are disappointed at the lack of winter weather, but are just happy there are places they can go to experience their winter wonderland–even if it is indoors. 

“We all love ice skating, skiing and sledding, and we just haven’t had any (chances to go) this year,” Tricia Valle said. “I grew up skating at Tenney Park on the North side with my mother and it’s something I wanted to do with my kids.”