ANKENY, Iowa -- If you're looking for an affordable way to get outside and be active, two new community ice rinks are open and ready for more skaters.
Both Waukee and Ankeny community ice rinks were able to open a little earlier because it got so cold so quickly.
The Iowa Wild team and Wells Fargo made these rinks free and easy for the community to use. All you need is a pair of skates or some hockey gear to get you going.
Ankeny Parks and Rec Director Nick Lenox said people are really enjoying the new rink and it's really brought the community together.
"Hockey is a lot more popular in the metro area. If you’re outside looking in, it may be harder to see, but it actually is a growing sport in the metro area especially with the Iowa Wild now doing a lot of outreach in the metro community. There's more and more, it's a growing trend. It's a good fit for Iowa as long as get cold enough temperatures. I know finding ice time in the metro area is a lot of concern for teams and this is one more location they'd be able to get that," Lenox said.
Iowa Wild President Todd Fredrickson said they wanted to bring these ice rinks to the community because accessible and affordable ways to be active in the winter time are extremely important and growing the interest in hockey all starts with putting on some skates.
"It's a terrific opportunity for us to introduce ice skating and then eventually the sport of hockey. So it's a great community initiative for us, but also too, it's creating a safe environment for somebody to do an outdoor activity like ice skating. You don't have to worry about falling through the ice. It's providing people the opportunity to get out and do something active in the winter time," Fredrickson said.
Fredrickson said they want to sponsor two more ice rinks next year so that more people are inspired to start skating and grow the interest toward hockey here in central Iowa.
Both Waukee and Ankeny ice rinks are free and open for hockey from dawn to noon and open skating from noon to dusk.
The free ice rinks are located at:
715 W 1st St, Ankeny
1505 6th St, Waukee
2500 Grand Ave, West Des Moines