Recognized as the city’s newest downtown attraction, the 12,500-square-foot outdoor refrigerated ice surface will serve as a community gathering place for both residents of the National Capital Region and its visitors, while operating annually from about mid-November through the end of March.
Earlier today, Senators president Cyril Leeder joined Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson, Senators executive vice-president and general manager Bryan Murray, head coach Paul MacLean, Senators players Erik Karlsson
and Milan Michalek
, Sens Foundation president Danielle Robinson, Hockey Canada Foundation vice-chair at large Claude Allain and various city councillors for a ribbon cutting ceremony and the illumination of the outdoor surface. Construction on the site began last Oct. 5.
“The Rink of Dreams is an exciting addition to our downtown core,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “The Rink will attract residents and tourists alike while playing host to dozens of events that bring our community together. I would like to thank the Ottawa Senators, the Sens Foundation, Hockey Canada and all the private sector partners who helped make this happen.”
“The Rink of Dreams is one of the most significant recreational and community-related projects we have ever been involved in,” said Leeder. “It’s very much a credit to city officials, the Hockey Canada Foundation, the Sens Foundation and our own staff that this facility will be available for residents and visitors to Ottawa for the winters ahead. I’m certain that I speak for the many who were involved in this project and are all thrilled to see it open ahead of Ottawa’s hosting of the 2012 NHL All-Star Weekend.”
“We could not be more excited that the Rink of Dreams is set to open,” said Bob Nicholson, president and CEO of Hockey Canada. “It will be a place where residents and visitors alike can come and enjoy Canada’s game, and we are so proud that Hockey Canada and the Hockey Canada Foundation have played such a large role in this dream becoming a reality.”
“Outdoor skating remains an important winter pastime enjoyed by many Canadians,” said Robinson. “The Rink of Dreams is the first of 20 rinks we intend to build in eastern Ontario and western Quebec in the years to come, thus cementing our goal of making outdoor skating widely available in the heart of Canada’s capital for a number of months each year.”
The City of Ottawa will operate the rink and has contributed $250,000 toward its construction costs. The Sens Foundation, along with local partners and construction companies, will contribute the remainder of the nearly $2-million design and construction budget for the Rink of Dreams project.
For more information about the Sens Foundation, visit www.sensfoundation.com. For more information about the Hockey Canada Foundation, visit http://www.hockeycanada.ca/foundation.