As the chill of winter approaches, Bear Mountain State Park heralds the arrival of the season with the opening of its iconic outdoor ice rink. A beloved winter tradition, the rink first opened its doors in 1922, marking nearly a century of skating history.
Located on the picturesque banks of Hessian Lake, just north of the Bear Mountain Inn, the original rink quickly became a hub of winter activity. Its popularity soared, drawing in an impressive 500,000 visitors during the 1928-29 season. The facility also played a vital role in local sports, serving as the home rink for the West Point hockey team.
Tragedy struck in 1941 when a devastating fire razed the original structure and its ice-making infrastructure. Determined to keep the tradition alive, the park promptly erected a new rink the following season. The current rink, which has been in operation since 1955, continues to offer a nostalgic and picturesque skating experience.
This year, the rink is set to host six skating sessions on Fridays, and five sessions on Sundays. Each session lasts 90 minutes, providing ample time for visitors to enjoy the ice. Admission is a modest $5.00 per person, making it an affordable outing for families. Children aged 4 and under can skate for free, ensuring that even the youngest skaters can join in the fun. For those without their own skates, rentals are conveniently available at the rink.