Whether you’re lacing up skates for the first time or you’re an experienced skater looking to improve your technique, there are plenty of local parks throughout Pennsylvania which offer ice skating this season! As the temperature continues to drop, get dressed in warm layers and head out to ice skate. Natural ice is not usually as smooth as ice in a rink, but the views at your local parks can be spectacular. Check out our list below for places to skate!
North Park Ice Rink, Allegheny County
From mid-November to mid-March, North Park in Allegheny County offers ice skating to residents and nonresidents. Skating tickets may be purchased online in advance. Learn more here.
Dilworth Park, Philadelphia
Dilworth Park is a public park and open space along the western side of City Hall in Center City, Philadelphia. The rink will be open daily (including on Thanksgiving and Christmas) through February 26, 2023. Skating sessions are available in 90-minute time slots online. Learn more here.
Bethlehem, Northampton and Lehigh Counties
Visit the Municipal Ice Rink in Bethlehem, PA! To view skating times or the calendar, visit their website. Learn more here.
Roychester Park, Montgomery County
This 12.7 acre park is located on Cleveland, Corinthian and Harding Avenues, and is known for its many sports facilities – including natural outdoor skating! Learn more here.
Blue Spring Park, Centre County
Located right in the heart of central PA in Historic Boalsburg, Blue Spring Park offers a seasonal on ground ice rink for skating and hockey fans. Learn more here.
Overlook Park, Lancaster County
The new ice-skating rink in Lancaster County is open now and will be running through Feb. 26, 2023. The rink will be open Wednesdays and Thursdays from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., Fridays from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Learn more here.
Callahan Park, McKean County
Callahan Ice Rink in Bradford, Pennsylvania is open seasonally from the first week of November to the first week of March. Learn more here.
Green Lane Park, Montgomery County
Among the beauty of the park, there is a smaller family-friendly section dedicated to ice skating when conditions permit. In addition to ice skating, winter lovers can cross-country ski, sled and ice fish. Learn more here.
Brady’s Run Park, Beaver County
The largest park in Beaver County, this park consists of nearly 2,000 acres including an outdoor skate park. Learn more here.
You can also find a list of state parks which offer ice skating here.
As you venture out onto the ice, here are some safety tips to keep in mind throughout the season!
Make sure your skates fit and the blades are sharp enough. Skates that are too big won’t give you enough ankle support, making it easier for you to lose your balance and fall, and can even put stress on your muscles and bones, making serious injury more likely. Skates that are too small can cause painful blisters, and prevent proper circulation in the feet.
Don’t be afraid to wear safety gear! Many people don’t wear safety gear like helmets, knee pads, wrist pads, or elbow pads—like they should when ice skating. But if you’d wear them when rollerblading or skateboarding, why wouldn’t you wear them when ice skating? Safety gear can make a huge difference in preventing injuries after falls when ice skating.
Stick to the basics. As impressive as it may be to see people performing tricks such as skating backward, spins, or jumps (even small bunny hops), don’t attempt these until you’ve mastered skating comfortably, which will usually take multiple visits to the rink. This also goes for games such as tag or other games likely to cause injury.
Keep space between you and other skaters. Novice skaters will often instinctively grab the closest person to them to prevent a fall, but this often results in both skaters crashing to the ice. To avoid injuring others, and to avoid becoming a victim to someone else’s fall, keep a safe distance between yourself and other skaters on the rink.
If you fall, try to get up or out of the way as quickly as you can. Other skaters will have a harder time seeing you when you’re on the ground, and inexperienced skaters will likely have a difficult time stopping or moving out of the way before colliding with you. The easiest way to get up from a fall is from a kneeling position.
Never let children skate unsupervised. Small children are at greater risk at ice rinks because they can be more easily knocked over and may not have as great a sense of balance as adults and teens. Make sure a capable adult who already knows how to skate is always nearby. Children should also skate to the outside of the rink where they can grab onto the handrail if necessary.
Stay safe, and happy skate season!
Check out our Local Parks Finder to find local parks near you.
Stay in touch all year round and visit our website to sign up for our mailing list to stay up-to-date on all things local parks and recreation!