Are backyard ice rinks the new swimming pools?
Have you started to think about how you'll entertain your family and keep active during the winter? You wouldn't be the only one.
Backyard ice rinks are in high demand as we move into the winter months.
Guelph-based Rinkmaster owner Chas Birkett says they started seeing increased demand back in the summer.
"Clearly there's a big demand for backyard fun this year, I mean people are sort of stuck at home and looking for things and activities to do for themselves," Birkett says. "We've been busy all summer quite frankly, and now it's really exhilirated.
That demand is expected to grow into the winter months, and Birkett says they could end up doubling business this year.
"I think a lot of people who have kids who play hockey and organized hockey with the partial shutdown of that, I think people are looking for activities for their kids to do, looking for things they can do with the family, and some of it is to provide some icetime for kids that aren't getting as much as they would normally have playing hockey," Birkett said.
Birkett says these ice rinks also aren't that tough to maintain, and while the weather is nice, this is the perfect time to get your rink set up.
"It is just really a labour of love, there's nothing better than getting out," he says. "When the kids were small, it was sort of the dad time out flooding the rink and maintaining the rink — my winter garden I would call it — when it's -15 C outside, as long as you're dressed for it, there are some beautiful, beautiful night skies out."