David Street Station Will Not Have Ice Skating Rink This Winter
The David Street Station has announced that, due to unforeseen circumstances, it will not be able to offer an ice rink to the community this winter season.
That's according to a lengthy message on the David Street Station Facebook page.
"We’ve hit a bump in the road that will make our 2022-2023 winter season look a little different than previous years," the post stated. "As you may or may not know, our outdoor ice rink requires an industrial chiller to keep the ice frozen and accessible for skating. Due to supply chain issues that are out of our control, our supplier has made us aware that they do not have an available chiller for us to rent this year (and yes, we reached out far in advance)."
The post stated that those behind the scenes worked hard to find another chiller, but they were unable to do so, due to the expense associated with it.
"After hearing this news, we worked hard behind the scenes to try and find another chiller that would allow us to move forward with the ice rink," the post said. "After several phone calls to multiple companies across the nation, we were left with two options: pay for another chiller rental that would be nearly triple in price or to forego having an ice rink this season. Because it would be financially irresponsible to our operational health to pay that amount, we unfortunately will not be able to host an outdoor ice rink this upcoming season."
The ice skating rink has been a highlight of Casper winters for the past few years, and it has played host the the annual Community Christmas Tree lighting.
The good news is that the Community Christmas Tree will still be on display.
The bad news is, you can't skate around it.
"Since David Street Station is privately funded, not financially affiliated with the City of Casper, and receives no taxpayer dollars, we rely solely on sponsorships, donations, and grants to operate and bring free events to our community," David Street Station wrote. "We know you might be wondering why don’t we just buy a chiller instead of rent one, but with a limited yearly budget, it simply is a cost ($300K+/- pre-covid) that we can’t pay out all at once in our current financial state. It would be our hope that we can eventually raise enough funds to be able to purchase an ice rink chiller, so that our facility and community never have to experience this uncertainty again."
In addition to still featuring the Community Christmas Tree and its lighting event, the David Street Station also promises to feature a variety of winter events throughout the upcoming months.
"We’ve already rolled up our sleeves and started to come up with new and exciting activities to do this winter season at the station," the post stated. "These include, but are not limited to: holiday markets, photos and activities with Santa, an ugly sweater party, live music under the lights, holiday themed gatherings, and more!"
The David Street Station stated that they have plans to utilize a large commercial canopy to create a sheltered space around the Station, in order to still put on events, even in those coldest winter days.
"We already began reaching out to companies near and far," the post stated. "Whether this type of solution comes from a company or another non-profit, we will be open to any help from our community to make something of this caliber happen. If we are able to secure this type of covered space, no matter snow, rain, or shine, it will be event time!"
While this news could disappoint those who have grown to love the ice skating rink, it does further exemplify just how community-oriented the David Street Station is. Because of it not being affiliated with other entities, that allows them to put on events year-round without having to clear them with other officials. Unfortunately, it also means they don't accept money from these entities. It also shows just how important community donations are to the future of this facility.
"When David Street Station was built, we promised year-round programming and activities for our community, and that is just what we are going to do," the post closed. "Although there will be no ice rink, there will still be holiday spirit in the air, twinkling lights aglow, and coming together as a community. We thank you all in advance for your understanding, and sincerely apologize to those who looked forward to the ice rink this year."
Downtown Casper Christmas Parade 2021