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6 Places to Skate This Winter

Winter–for some it’s a dismal season with little to do but stare out the window forlornly; for others, it’s a dismal season with the occasional chance to skitter around on solidified water. Whether you’re whizzing around the ice like a pro or holding onto a traffic cone for stability, skating can be one of the few ways to make the most out of winter. If you’re looking to get a bit of a workout or battle that pesky case of seasonal affective disorder, check out one of the following prime skating locations.


Prepare for snow, cold, and lots of fun


The Alex and Ani Center


Courtesy of Alex and Ani Center’s Facebook page

The Rhode Island equivalent of Rockefeller Center, the Alex and Ani Center is located in the heart of downtown and is usually decked out in holiday cheer. Admire the enormous Christmas tree (or holiday tree as some would call it). Go for a skate with that special someone and grab a bite at one of the city’s great restaurants. 2 Kennedy Plz., Providence, 401-337-5544,

Lincoln Woods


Courtesy of Lincoln Wood’s Facebook

If you’d like to skate and admire winter wildlife at the same time, Lincoln Woods has several ponds that will give you just that. Make sure the ice is safe! Call the Ice Safety hotline at 401-667-6222 before heading out. Enjoy the snow covered pines, chirping winter birds and cool, fresh air. 2 Manchester Print Works Rd., Lincoln, 401-723-7892,

Newport Skating Center


Courtesy of Newport Skating Center’s Facebook page

With the surrounding city’s old-time feel, you’ll think you’ve been transported to A Christmas Carol when skating at the Newport Skating Center. Only a snowball’s throw from the ocean, you can enjoy the salty air and the sights of snowy Newport. With free and discounted skate nights during the week, you can afford to spend a little extra at one of city’s many fine eateries. 4 Commercial Wharf, Newport, 401-846-3018,



Frigid temperatures, rain, scorching heat–the weather doesn’t matter in these sheltered rinks


Cranston Veterans Memorial Ice Rink


Courtesy of Cranston Veterans’ Rink’s Facebook

With two NHL sized rinks, there should be plenty of room at the Veterans Memorial Ice Rink. Looking for something to do on Friday night? The Rock n’ Skate offers live DJs and two hours of skate time from 8:00 to 10:00 PM for only five dollars. Grab a drink and snack from their concession stand or take a break from the ice and play one of the classic games in their arcade. 900 Phenix Ave., Cranston, 401-944-8690,

Boss Arena


Courtesy of Boss Arena’s Facebook

Whether you’re a student, alum, or just a looking for a place to skate, URI’s Boss Arena is a well-equipped indoor rink great for every skill level. From open figure skating to the family-oriented Rock n’ Skate night, they’re open to the public for at least a couple of hours every day Monday through Saturday. Looking to hone your skating skills? They offer lessons all year round. 1 Keaney Rd., South Kingstown, 401-874-9260,

Smithfield Municipal Ice Rink


Courtesy of Smithfield Ice Rink’s Facebook

Home to Bryant University’s Bulldogs and the high school hockey teams of multiple northern Rhode Island towns, the Smithfield Municipal Ice Rink has public hockey and skating all year. If you’d like to have a birthday party or other arctic extravaganza, you can rent the rink and their conference room. 109 Pleasant View Ave., Smithfield, 401-233-105,

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One Cent Wonders at the Spring Lake Arcade

by John Kiernan

Long before the flashy video arcade burst into existence, its predecessor, the penny arcade, was offering cheap thrills at a fraction of the cost.  It may be a dying breed, but there are stragglers still hanging on at places like Spring Lake Arcade in Burrillville. Located right on the beach, the arcade offers a cool escape after a day of swimming and sunbathing. The arcade has been around since 1930, considered by some to be the oldest penny arcade in America.


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