Families can ice skate for free Saturday afternoon at the Family Winter Wonderland in Wyandanch, where they can also meet champion French figure skater Mae-Berenice Meite and American figure skater Rohene Ward.
The season-opening celebration at the outdoor Rinx at Delano Plaza runs from noon to 3:30 p.m. with free use of ice skates and even gratis lessons (as space permits) amid the meet-and-greets with the famous skaters.
“It’s really important for the kids within the community to see people who look like them performing on ice, so that they know that they can do it, too," says Kerry Gillick-Goldberg, communications and programming director for the Wyandanch Plaza Association, which is co-sponsoring the event along with The Rinx at Delano Stewart Plaza. “We always strive to bring wonderful performers to the community, and not just bring them to perform but bring them to engage with the community."
In addition to skating, children can have a complimentary photo taken with Santa and will receive a free gift such as wireless headsets, basketballs, and "Frozen II" and "Paw Patrol" themed arts-and-crafts kits, Gillick-Goldberg says. Ice skating is a great sport for children because it teaches resilience, Gillick-Goldberg says. "Ice skating teaches you that when you fall down, you have to stand up,” she says.
The rink is at 40 Station Dr., Wyandanch. After Saturday's kickoff, regular season skating sessions are $5 each and include use of skates. For more information, call 516-455-3179 or visit therinx.com/WP/.