The countdown begins: opening of the ice season at Canalside


Hot weather may be upon us, but soon the cold weather will set in…for good this time. But that only means we look forward to winter activities, like ice skating and curling. And when it comes to those winter activities in downtown Buffalo, there’s no better place than the ice at Canalside.

The upcoming skating and curling season – not to mention ice bikes and ice bumper cars – is courtesy of hosts Be Our Guest, Ltd. and Western New York’s Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield presenter. On Friday, November 25, the ice cream at Canalside will open to great fanfare, with a launch celebration starting at 5:30 p.m. at 8:30 p.m. The family-friendly event will include a DJ performance, a colorful display of holiday lights, fresh food and beverages, and fireworks.

“It’s that time of year when Canalside turns into a scene from a favorite holiday movie; with skating, festive music and tasty rinkside food,” said Port of Erie Canal Development Board Chairman Robert Gioia. “We encourage everyone to make plans to experience winter wonderland by the water – with a wide variety of activities there is something for every family.”

A delicious new menu will also be available at the Nosh and Nibble Snack Shack for guests to indulge their taste buds. 

“The Ice at Canalside offers fun for the whole family along Buffalo’s historic waterfront in the heart of downtown,” said Kevin Parkinson, vice president of finance and operations for Be Our Guest. “We have an array of new activities, theme nights, partnerships that we hope will inspire all of Western New York to come and embrace the experience.”

“Being able to enjoy four seasons, especially on Buffalo’s beautiful waterfront, is one of the many benefits of living in Western New York,” said Michael Ball, Vice President, Community Affairs, Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of Western New York. “As the official health plan of Canalside, we are ready to welcome our community to the ice of Canalside for another great season of ice skating and winter activities.”


Rink admission and skate rentals can be purchased inside the Honda Winter Lodge. Guests are required to complete a waiver prior to participating in any activity at Canalside. Waivers can be completed onsite or online at www.buffalowaterfront.com. Curling will be available for pre-booking as well as walk-in sales.

Ice Bikes and Ice Bumper Cars are featured by Five Star Bank.

Leagues and specialty programs will be announced in the coming weeks, including Skate Great Learn to Skate, GameOn Leagues, and Healthy Buffalo Broomball.

To visit the ice, take the NFTA Metro Rail to the Erie Canal Harbor Station stop or there is ample parking at the parking ramps and surface lots of the Canalside area. Access to the rink is available from Main Street, Commercial Street and Marine Drive.

Business hours

  • Monday: CLOSED, leagues and private parties welcome
  • Tuesday: CLOSED, leagues and private parties welcome
  • Wednesday: 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Thursday: 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Friday: 1 p.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Saturday: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Sunday: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Special Holiday Hours:

  • December 25: CLOSED
  • December 26 – January 1: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • January 16: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • February 20 – 23: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • February 24: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

*Please note that times may change depending on the weather. For the most recent opening hours, visit www.buffalowaterfront.com or follow Buffalo Waterfront on social media.

Pricing:

Free skating

  • 5 and under: free
  • Children and military: $6
  • 13 and over: $8
  • Skate rental: $5
  • Skate Walker TBD

*WNY Highmark BCBS members receive $1 off admission, $10 off season passes, and $19 off family season passes.

Curling

  • $15 / per person

minimum 4 people; Up to 10 people

Bumper cars

  • $8 / 8 minute ride

Ice Bike Price

The Ice at Canalside will be open until Sunday, February 26, 2023.

For more event details, visit www.buffalowaterfront.com.

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