Monday, December 28, 2009

My World Tuesday #63: I Never Would've Believed It

"Winterfest? Seriously?"
Raleigh, NC - December 2009 (Click to embiggen)

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Let's clear one thing up right up front. Raleigh, NC has hosted the NHL Entry Draft. It has hosted two Stanley Cup Finals, and one Stanley Cup Champion. It has been promised an NHL All-Star Game at some future point. (Yeah, about that? Mr. Bettman? Gary? Can I call you Gary? Still waiting on that one pal.)

For all that, Raleigh is never, ever gonna host the NHL's Winter Classic Game. Not gonna happen. Because the Winter Classic Game is played outdoors. And for that, you have to be able to have ice ... outdoors. And for that to happen, you have to have sub-freezing weather, right?


Okay, apparently not. Enter some engineering geniuses who've figured out a way to keep ice frozen outside... in a climate where you'll never find a pond frozen hard enough for a small dog to walk on. The rink is about 20% of the size of an NHL rink, measuirng around 40' x 85' and will remain open until January 31st as part of a two-month celebration called "Winterfest". If you've got a half hour, the local ABC affiliate, WTVD has video of the celebration that took place December 4. (Apologies to Big Apple residents for the comparisons to Rockefeller Plaza... it's just growing pains. They'll get over it.)

Maybe it's just me, but when the mean temperature for the month of December is probably 50° F or better, I have a hard time associating that with something called Winteranything. Granted it'll get cold here in spells, but overall? I have to wonder what kind of shape this rink is in most days.

But hey. Looks like people are having fun and that's the key. So what do I know?

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Anonymous said...

The ice rink is cool, but after years of living in the Midwest, an average temperature of 50 in the winter is plenty cold enough for me. :0)

snowelf said...

Can you ice skate on it? Is it open to the public? I am all for it!! I would love to ice skate in 50 degree weather--sounds perfect to me!


Carver said...

Great shot. OK you got me curious, and I checked it out. The mean temperature in Raleigh in December is 43 F (average low 33 F, average high 52 F), mean in January is 39 (average low 30 F average high 49 F), and in February the mean is 43 (average low 32 F average high 53 F).

Granted, rare for ponds to freeze here but I can actually remember one year when Shelley Lake froze for about a week. Yeah I know, rare. One of my scariest memories was when the park on Beech Ridge Rd where I grew up had a frozen creek and we dared each other to ride our bikes down the snowy hill across the frozen creek. Yep the exception proves the rule. No one in there right mind would count on ice skating on a pond in Raleigh in the winter.

Carver said...

PS Apologies for being a busy body. I'm working on a post for nature notes which I do on my other blog (Carver's Sight) and I'll be doing a year in weather so I was looking up averages etc. I won't be posting that until later in the week (not on Carver Cards but as I said the other one) so I've been looking up factoids about weather. Didn't mean to jump on your post. Your guess would have been close to mine.

The Bumbles said...

I saw on one of the NCAA bowl coverage games that there was a rink in Charlotte too.

I just did a travel post for UpTake about New England outdoor public skating rinks - kudos to NC for bringing some of that fun to town. I would much rather skate outside in 40's instead of 20's!

And P.S. - I will be attending the Winter Classic in Fenway - photos to follow ;0)

Photo Cache said...

It would be great fun for the residents. Report back on this okay.

Happy new Year.

Anonymous said...

probably being done to lure people downtown and garner more business? interesting concept...

Riet said...

That must be great fun.

Jane said...

Sounds like fun, looks like there are alot of people there. Thanks for sharing:)

magiceye said...

lovely image!