During the City Council meeting on Monday, Mike Enright, who lives on Eickhoff Blvd, approached the council during the Crookston Forum with the idea for a neighborhood managed outdoor ice rink. Enright said that along with a group of neighbors in his neighborhood they’ve been talking about having an ice rink in the area for a couple of years. “We’ve been talking with a lot of guys and gals in the community,” said Enright. “We’ve all got kids that are playing hockey and we kind of miss the days when we had neighborhood rinks. Everyone was a rink rat. You went out, you hung out at the neighborhood rink and had your mom bring a potluck, chili, something like that and hot chocolate. You just skated all night, everybody had a great time.”
Enright said he spoke with Crookston Parks and Recreation Director Scott Riopelle about the neighborhood’s idea about this time last year, but with the transition to summer coming up it wasn’t great timing. “I talked with Scott Riopelle about it last year about this time,” said Enright. “He didn’t seem into the project, but it was the end of winter. He’s looking for spring, summer projects like baseball diamonds. We got together again with about 15-20 guys and I lucked out and ended up being the spokesperson. This group of people was willing to pitch in together to try to get these boards built because the City no longer has the boards. We would like to get a pilot program at Evergreen Park on the north side of town. There are plenty of people there, we know plenty of people that have kids right there in that neighborhood.”
The community is willing to put down the liner, put up and take down the boards and maintain the snow if they can get permission to use the City. “As far as the equipment, we can put the boards up, we can put the poly liner in,” said Enright. “I have my tractor in town that I use to clear snow. I’m willing to help, we have several people with snowblowers nearby that are willing to help with a small shot. The main thing we’re looking for from the City is permission to put it in a park because it is City property. And to get help with water from the fire department or public works because it gets more expensive and time consuming then a guy thinks. If you’re out there with a garden hose it takes a long time to flood a rink, with a fire hose not too much. As far as the boards I’m going to build them myself or get a group of guys together to build them.”
Enright said he’ll be present the neighborhood’s proposal at the April Park Board meeting which will be held on April 15 at 4:45 p.m.