Skating rink planned near Atlas Park mall

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A Brooklyn-based sports and events center announced plans last week to open an outdoor skating rink this month in a parking lot near the Shops at Atlas Park in Glendale.

Kevin McCabe, founder and chief executive officer of Aviator Sports and Events said the company would be temporarily opening and operating a 70-foot-by-130-foot ice skating rink in the “Marshalls lot” between 81st and 82nd streets on Cooper Avenue. The rink will be in business from mid-November to mid-March.

“We thought it would be fun to give it a try,” McCabe said.

McCabe said the exact opening date of the skating rink has not been determined since Aviator is still going through the permitting process. The current plans now are to temporarily install a rink as well as a large carnival-style slide which will be coated with ice. There will also be booths that will sell snacks and hot drinks like hot chocolate and coffee, places where people can buy Christmas merchandise, benches for people to sit and a Christmas tree.

“It’s more like a winter park, a Christmas park type of thing,” McCabe said.

The Atlas Park rink will join the City Ice Pavilion in Long Island City and the pool and rink in Flushing Meadows Corona Park.

McCabe, who lives in Forest Hills, said he got the idea to open a skating rink in the area when he passed by the lot while visiting Glendale to see his grandchildren.

“It’s a great neighborho­od,” McCabe said. “It’s sort of the confluence of a number of really great neighborho­ods.”

He said this will be the first remote location for the Aviator company and he hopes to use this to introduce Aviator’s programs to Queens and the community.

Gary Giordano, district manager of Community Board 5, said the rink had the potential to be an excellent attraction to bring people to the Shops at Atlas Park.

“This can be a great activity for the people in the community who would have to go much further for any kind of skating enjoyment,” Giordano said.

The rink will be open from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Thursday, 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. The cost to skate for adults is $8 and $6 for kids with skate rental fees being $5 per pair. Discounts for schools and other groups are available. Those interested in the rink can visit or call 718-759-9800.

McCabe said they were looking to hire local residents who are proficient in ice skating for temporary positions. Those who are interested should call 718-758-7582 and ask for Anna Gianotti.

“We want to hire as many people from the community as we can,” McCabe said.

Reach reporter Rebecca Henely by e-mail at or by phone at 718-260-4564.

Updated 6:22 pm, October 10, 2011
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