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Cracked ice! No skating in McCarren or Prospect parks this winter

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Ice skaters in North and Brownstone Brooklyns will have to find somewhere else to practice their double lutzes this winter.

A plan to turn the McCarren Park Pool into a skating rink fell through the ice and a long-awaited overhaul of Prospect Park’s Wollman rink got behind schedule, leaving skaters who want to be out in the cold relying on indoor rinks in faraway Southern Brooklyn.

The Open Space Alliance of North Brooklyn fought for the right to turn the newly renovated McCarren Park pool into a winter skating rink, then failed to deliver after executive director Stephanie Thayer stepped down this fall.

“The deadline for ordering the rink was Sept. 15, and we didn’t make it,” said Open Space Alliance board chairman Steve Hindy, the founder of the Brooklyn Brewery. “We worked with Parks to make the season happen anyway, but the company that supplies the rink couldn’t get it up until December, so we’d miss a lot of the holiday season.”

In the end, it came down to money.

“We decided it would not be financially viable,” said Hindy, who promised his organization will get started early to bring ice skating to Williamsburg in the following winter. “It would have been an outlay of $250,000, and there was the likelihood that we wouldn’t made that money back.”

And skaters won’t fare any better in Prospect Park, where the $74-million replacement for the Wollman Rink — which was slated to wrap up this year — got off track, leaving a planned indoor rink and an outdoor rink under construction as the weather gets colder.

“At one point, we were looking to open this year in a temporary rink, but it would have been more than a half million dollars in temporary costs so we decided to focus on 2013,” said Prospect Park Alliance spokesman Paul Nelson.

That leaves indoor skating at Aviator Field in Mill Basin and Abe Stark Arena in Coney Island as the prime spots for public ice skating in the borough — a cold reality for skaters in Williamsburg and Greenpoint and the Brownstone belt.

“The closest outdoor ice rink to Williamsburg is in Manhattan,” said disappointed ice skater Lauren Corry. “[A McCarren Park ice rink] would give residents something more local, and also not necessarily as bombarded with tourists.”

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Reader Feedback

Joey from Clinton Hills says:
Massive corruption under Bloomberg is never discussed...1) how does an ice rink cost $74 million dollars when the city already owned the land? 2) similarly, how did McCarren Pool cost $50 million dollars to overhaul. Ridiculous!

three years without skating at Prospect Park is a total disgrace!
Oct. 9, 2012, 10:16 am
Thank God from 11211 says:
Everyone in the neighborhood is simply heartbroken that the city's thugs won't be visiting Williamsburg this winter. The pool worked out so well we were really hoping that our violent, felonious visitors would be back for another season of fun, mischief, violence and a stream of squad cars. June and the violent parade of lifeguard beating criminals can't arrive soon enough.
Oct. 9, 2012, 4:22 pm
Voice of Verdad from 11211 says:
I am so bitter I have to swim in the same pool as my nasty old neighbors. Thank God I won't have to skate next to black or Hispanics, I'm busy pretending I'm a politically correct representative. Is there anyone around who won't kiss my ring so I can call them a "bully"?
Oct. 9, 2012, 6:50 pm
Imposter from 11211 says:
You are not the Voice of Verdad. You are a weirdo stalker DF.
Oct. 10, 2012, 12:28 pm
Terry Bull from 11222 says:
Voice of Verdad is a nag.
Oct. 10, 2012, 2:12 pm
Voice of Verdades from 11211 says:
I am the double-agent Puerto Rican-only-when-convenient TT stalking people I call stalkers.
Oct. 10, 2012, 2:33 pm
Kim Yuna from BK says:
Missed ordering a rink? Really? I have a coupon for free delivery from Groupon.
Oct. 10, 2012, 10:20 pm
Helen from Greenpoint says:
Hindy is a greedy character that is put on a pedestal for Brooklyn Brewery's championing over-saturating the borough with a mediocre and well marketed beer culture. What is he even suggesting with the rink not being able to "make the money back"? His obligation should be to spend the tons money he is making hand over fist selling beer at all the concerts OSA is permitted to have AT THE EXPENSE AND THE NEGLECT to the community they are entrusted to serve. These private public/ partnerships are horrible for parks. Horrible for taxpayers. NYC Parks, the city, and state condoning it is disgusting. It is rife with corruption, back room deals, favoritism, and unchecked accounting.
Oct. 12, 2012, 7:42 pm
Cmon from North Brooklyn says:
If OSA cannot fulfill the obligations that they committed to with their bid, then NYC should hand the project over to the next qualified bidder.
Oct. 13, 2012, 11:07 am

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